Daily Apple Privacy Stats and App Tracking Transparency
Last update: 17 Feb 2024 CET
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Daily Apple Privacy Stats and App Tracking Transparency

Over the last few years, Apple has invested heavily in user privacy protections. In December 2020, for instance, with the release of iOS 14.3, the tech giant introduced App Privacy Details to the Apple App Store. This new feature requires publishers to provide information about their app’s privacy features in App Store Connect, including information about the practices of third-party partners whose code they integrate into their products. As such, App Privacy Details enables users to better understand an app’s privacy practices before they download it to their devices.

But Apple didn’t stop there. The April 26, 2021 release of iOS 14.5 was accompanied by more privacy-related changes. Chief among these is the App Tracking Transparency feature, which requires developers to request user permission before tracking them for advertising purposes.

In short, Apple is running a full-court press on behalf of user privacy. So, we here at 42matters decided to leverage our app intelligence solutions to see how publishers have incorporated Apple’s new privacy standards into their strategies.

Data Source: 42matters

At 42matters, we take a holistic approach to mobile and connected TV (CTV) app intelligence. We track app metadata, performance metrics, technical specifications, strategic insights, and more. If you would like to leverage our data for your own products, processes, or research, you can access it via our APIs, File Dumps, Explorer, SDK Explorer, and App Watchlist.

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How Many iOS Apps on the App Store Use Privacy Labels?

Apple App Store82.78%1.55m+
Apps that track private information:
82.78%
1.55m+ Apps
Apps that don't track private information: 322.51k

82.78% of all Apple App StoreiOS apps declare the private information they track. This amounts to 1,550,832 apps. Conversely, 17.22%, or 322,508 apps, have not yet declared the private information they track.

How Many iOS Apps Use Data to Track Users?

Apple App Store15.31%286,752
Apps that track users:
15.31%
286,752 Apps
84.69%, or 1,586,588 apps have not declared that they use data to track users.

15.31% of all Apple App StoreiOS apps have declared that they use at least one data type to track users. This amounts to 286,752 apps. On the flip side, 84.69%, or 1,586,588 apps, have not declared that they use data to track users.

How Many iOS Apps Use Data Linked to Users?

Apple App Store31.73%594,393
Use data linked to users:
31.73%
594,393 Apps
68.27%, or 1,278,947 apps, have not declared that they use data linked to users.

31.73% of Apple App StoreiOS apps use data linked to users. This amounts to a total of 594,393 apps. On the other hand, 68.27%, or 1,278,947 apps, have not declared that they use data linked to users.

How Many iOS Apps Use Data Not Linked to Users?

Apple App Store33.91%635,304
Use data not linked to users:
33.91%
635,304 Apps
66.09%, or 1,238,036 apps, have not declared using non-user data.

33.91% of Apple App StoreiOS apps use data that is not linked to users. In total, this adds up to 635,304 apps. However, 66.09%, or 1,238,036 apps, have not declared using non-user data.

How Many iOS Apps Have Access to User Background Location?

Background Location refers to an aspect of Location Services where apps leverage information collected from cellular, Wi-Fi, and other networks to determine the approximate location of a device. Moreover, with this permission, apps do not need to be open to collect location information. Indeed, as the name implies, these apps operate at all times “in the background.”

Apple App Store18.44%345,490
Have access to background location:
18.44%
345,490 Apps

Currently, 18.44% of all Apple App StoreiOS apps have declared that they leverage Background Location or they collect Coarse or Precise location. In total, this amounts to 345,490 apps.

How Many Free/Paid iOS Apps Collect Data?
Apple App Store

Apps that Collect Data

Percentage of Apps
Number of Data Points
  • Free Apps: 49.74%
    10.95 Data Points
  • Paid Apps: 12.75%
    5.85 Data Points

49.74% of all free Apple App StoreiOS apps have declared that they collect privacy data. This amounts to 885,445 apps. However, this also means that 50.26%, or 894,644 apps, have not declared that they collect privacy data. Moreover, if a free app collects privacy data, it will collect an average of 11 data types.

12.75% of paid Apple App StoreiOS apps have declared that they collect privacy data. This amounts to 11,885 apps. However, this also means that 87.25%, or 81,366 apps, have not declared that they collect privacy data. In addition, if a paid app collects privacy data, it will collect an average of 6 data types.

Which App Store Genres Collect the Most Data?

In the chart below, you will see the App Store genres that collect the most types of data:

Apple App StoreGenres that Collect the most Data
Currently, Business collects the most data types, averaging 15.22 types of data for every app that collects private information. Arcade is second, averaging 27.1 types of data; Lifestyle is third, averaging 15.28 types of data; Entertainment is fourth, averaging 23.95 types of data; and Education is fifth, averaging 13.34 types of data.
How Many iOS Apps per Genre Declare Data Collection

In the chart below, you will find the five genres that collect the most private data. This data is determined using the total number of apps that collect private data, as well as the percentage of apps that do so.

  • Average number of collected data types if app collects any
  • Percentage of apps that collect data
Scroll right
86,634 apps in the Business access private data. This represents 11.03% of apps in the genre. Next comes Arcade, with a total of 12,205 apps, or 10.88%; Lifestyle, with a total of 78,085 apps, or 9.95%; Entertainment, with a total of 10,861 apps, or 9.68%; and Education, with a total of 73,501 apps, or 9.36%.
Contact us for a free consultation to see which game categories round out the top 10
What Do Apps Do With User Data?

Last, but not least, you’ll find a list of the uses for user data, declared by app publishers:

Data linked to you:
Data not linked to you:
Purpose of Data Linked to You

Currently, the most common use for this data is App Functionality, with 523,127 apps (88%) using it for this reason. The second most common use is Analytics (264,969; 45%), followed by Product Personalization (202,180; 34%), Developers Advertising (128,547; 22%); and Third Party Advertising (103,939; 17%).

Purpose of Data Not Linked to You

Here, the most common use is for App Functionality, with 452,473 apps (71%) using it for this reason. The second most common use is Analytics (370,529; 58%), followed by Third Party Advertising (126,786; 20%), Product Personalization (105,098; 17%); and Other Purposes (65,126; 10%).

Looking for Data-Rich Insight Into the iOS App Market?

42matters provides mobile and connected TV (CTV) app intelligence via a host of useful APIs, file dumps, and web-based research platforms like the 42matters Explorer, SDK Explorer, and App Watchlist.

Our products offer actionable insight into apps available Google Play, the Apple App Store, Amazon Appstore, Tencent App Store, Huawei AppGallery, and CTV platforms like Roku, Apple TV, Fire TV, Google TV, Vizio, LG, and Samsung.

To learn how 42matters can help your business, book a demo!

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