The apps you use, the types of apps you use, how long you use it for, and so on are valuable insights in consumer behavior. For example, someone who spends a lot of time on a fashion app versus someone who spends more time gaming will provide marketers very different information about those two users, allowing them to create ads that would appeal to either user.
This is why we can’t say we’re surprised, although a little worried, that T-Mobile is now getting ready to launch a new platform that basically sells the app usage data of users to marketers. Dubbed App Insights, this is a platform that has been in beta for the past year or so and it allows marketers to track T-Mobile subscribers based on the apps they have installed on their phones, as well as their engagement patterns.
Now, the semi-good news is that the data is anonymized which means that marketers won’t know who is using which app, and instead will just know which apps are being used. While we suppose anonymized data is good, it’s still kind of creepy and a little invasive. Also, there will not be any location-tracking either, and it seems that this tracking will skip iOS devices entirely.
The next bit of good news is that users can also opt out of this tracking and data collection, meaning that it is opt-in by default. This can be done either via T-Mobile’s Magenta Marketing Platform Choices app that is available on Android and iOS, or as The Verge notes, there is also the App Choices website that you can use if you’d rather not download an app just to opt out of it.
Source: The Verge