Both Microsoft and Google are reportedly working on technologies that would replace cookies and track users across platforms.
While cookies continue to “get the job done” in most cases, modern technologies bring along new set of challenges and opportunities. On one hand, rising privacy concerns have forced web browser makers to add “Do Not Track” features; and on the other – companies would like to be able to track users even if they switch devices.
Tracking per se isn’t something the two tech giants are looking for — we have the likes of NSA for those kinds of things — it’s the ability to serve highly targeted ads and make more money along the way.
According to Ad Age, Microsoft is looking for a way to track users across Windows computers, Bing, Internet Explorer, Windows Phone devices and even Xbox consoles. In a statement to the website, the Redmond giant agreed that “going beyond the cookie is important,” adding that their priority will be to “find ways to do this that respect the interests of consumers.” In other words, they want to make sure that if you’re already going to see ads, let’s make them relevant to your needs and desires.
It is said that this technology is still in the early phase, but we assume Microsoft would ultimately want it to work even on devices that don’t necessarily run Windows.
Meanwhile, Google is apparently working on something similar. Called AdID, this technology would introduce more granular privacy controls along with the ability to more fully track mobile usage.