Snap Inc., the parent company of the Snapchat social media platform, warned on Thursday that upcoming privacy changes by Apple could hurt its ad business despite user growth and revenue beating analysts’ fourth-quarter estimates.
Reuters reports that Snap, the owner of the popular photo-messaging app Snapchat, has warned that upcoming privacy changes to Apple’s iOS platform could hurt Snap’s ad business despite higher-than-expected user growth and revenue this year.
Snap is not the only company worried about the changes, Facebook and Apple have been engaged in a six-month-long privacy battle after Apple announced a new iOS update that would inform users of the apps that track their activity and give them the option to prevent the apps from doing so.
Snap has said that Apple’s planned change could present a “risk” to advertiser demand but added that it was unclear how that could affect business in the long run.
Tom Johnson, chief transformation officer at ad agency Mindshare Worldwide, commented: “The disruption to ad targeting caused by the iOS 14 privacy changes will clearly be a worry for Snap, which has been steadily growing its armory of ad formats and advertisers.”
During an earnings call with analysts, Snap Chief Business Officer Jeremi Gorman stated that Snap actually believes in Apple’s philosophy of protecting users’ privacy. Gorman stated: “We admire Apple and believe they are trying to do the right thing for customers,” adding that Snap is prepared to guide advertisers that utilize its platform through the iOS changes.
Snap’s daily active users rose 22 percent year-over-year to 265 million in the fourth quarter. Analysts had predicted 258 million, according to IBES data from Refinitiv. Revenue also grew 62 percent to $911 million, beating Wall Street’s consensus estimate of $857.4 million.
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