Sharing with everyone is passé and more than a little bit scary these days. We want to send photos to friends without posting them publicly. We want to reminisce without being permanently defined by our timelines. And we want the utility of apps without giving away our contact info to developers.
The problem is that this philosophy is hard to monetize for a social network that needs to maximize broadcasted content and engagement to score ad views. But it’s easy to monetize if you sell the phone and then let people be as private as they want on it. That’s why today at WWDC, Apple showed off changes that turn iOS into the asocial network — software that mimics the tools of Facebook but without the pressure to overshare.
Most stunningly, Apple will require apps that offer third-party login options like those from Facebook and Google to integrate its new Sign In With Apple feature that lets users hide their email addresses from developers. It’s a power move that makes Facebook look wreckless with your contact info by comparison.
Privacy has been a core Apple talking point for years, from the iPhone’s secure enclave and FaceID to message encryption to protection against tracking. But those safeguards have been focused on getting out of the way to let Apple’s products to ‘just work’. Increasingly, Apple is moving privacy further forward in the user experience to highlight how you can get more out of sharing less. That’s a wise strategy since the company has proven its inability to build full scale social networks out of Ping, Apple Music Connect, and iMessage.
“At Apple, we believe privacy is a fundamental human right and we engineer it into every single thing we do” said Apple SVP Craig Federighi . Mark Zuckerberg declared “The future is private” at Facebook’s F8 conference a month ago, but proved it wasn’t his company’s past or present by failing to launch products that protect users. Now like Google did at I/O a few weeks ago with a slew of privacy tech launches, Apple is actually living up to its talking points with today’s beta release of iOS 13.
Photo Message Recommendations – When you bring up the Share Sheet for a photo or video in iOS 13, Apple will recommend people to send it to over iMessage or Mail based on who you frequently share with and if friends appear in the content. With a few taps you can privately deliver your imagery to a slew of your closest friends and favorite group chats, which could eliminate the need to post it more widely on Facebook or Instagram.
Asocial Media Tools – Instagram offers no way to download a photo or video you edit without first posting it to the feed first. That greedy growth hack leaves room for Apple to usurp more of the creative process. iOS 13 will let you edit videos for lighting, color, contrast, and more plus rotate clips you accidentally shot sideways — all which Instagram and Facebook can’t do. Forgoing the social network side lets Apple focus on tools that you’re free to use however you want.
And with the new Photo Day feature, Apple automatically hides and emphasizes different photos from each day to create magazine-style layouts. These ignite nostalgia and create a visual diary without the embarassment of all that content being on social media to power those TimeHop and Facebook On This Day features.
Memoji – To date, Apple’s interest in animated avatar masks that look like you has centered around FaceTime and video messages. But now it’s realizing how these virtual mini-me’s can enhance privacy while connecting more deeply. iOS 13 will let you opt to share your name and Memoji (or a real photo) as your message thread thumbnail in iMessage so new conversation partners like group chat friends-of-friends can better identify you without showing strangers your actual face. And Memoji can now be used as pre-generated stickers in chat, making it a direct competitor to Snapchat’s Bitmoji and Facebook’s Avatars that just launched today……Read More>>