Google will delay the end of third-party cookies for Chrome until mid-2024. In 2019 Google unveiled their Privacy Sandbox initiative to protect people’s privacy online and give companies and developers the tools they need. 

Privacy Sandbox was originally meant to be implemented in 2022; however, last year, Google announced it would be delayed until mid-2023, but now has further extended the delay to 2024. This means third-party cookies will remain as part of Chrome until the initiative is rolled out.

Why Is This?

The reason for the delay is so that the Privacy Sandbox testing window can be expanded further with a gradual increase in the trial population. The Vice President of Privacy Sandbox, Anthony Chavez, explained:

“The most consistent feedback we’ve received is the need for more time to evaluate and test the new Privacy Sandbox technologies before deprecating third-party cookies in Chrome. This feedback aligns with our commitment to the CMA to ensure that the Privacy Sandbox provides effective, privacy-preserving technologies and the industry has sufficient time to adopt these new solutions. This deliberate approach to transitioning from third-party cookies ensures that the web can continue to thrive, without relying on cross-site tracking identifiers or covert techniques like fingerprinting.”

What’s Next?

Some developers can already begin to test these APIs, although the trials have started to be expanded to millions of users globally. Google plans to gradually increase the trial population this year and into 2023 so they can continue gaining feedback on the Privacy Sandbox. 

The Privacy Sandbox APIs are to be launched and available in Chrome by Q3 2023. Google says, “As developers adopt these APIs, we now intend to begin phasing out third-party cookies in Chrome in the second half of 2024”. So, what impact will this have on the future?

How Will This Affect Targeted Ads?

As third-party cookies are used to learn about a user’s online behaviour on other websites, this information will no longer be able to be obtained, making it more difficult to target ads toward the desired audience. 

However, with Google’s Privacy Sandbox API hopefully providing companies and developers with the data they need, the post-third-party cookies advertising world still looks to be bright!

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