Apple released iOS 15, the newest update to its iOS operating system, on Monday, September 20. This update contains an array of advanced features that Apple says will help users “connect, focus, explore, and do even more” with their iPhones than ever before.
While iOS 15 may change the way users interact with their phones in their day-to-day lives, it will significantly change the way businesses can interact with their customers, particularly when it comes to measuring engagement.
We’ve broken down the top 3 iOS features with the most potential to impact your business:
1. Mail Privacy Protection
What it is: Mail Privacy Protection aims to protect the privacy of iPhone users by giving them the ability to decide if they want to keep senders from collecting information about their mail activity. When enabled, email senders can no longer track if a user has opened their email. Additionally, the IP address of the user is blocked which prevents senders from viewing their location or from linking their email activity to other online activity.
What it means for users: This feature gives users the power to control how their email activity is monitored by third party senders, and provides further peace of mind regarding email privacy.
What it means for businesses: Businesses that largely rely on open rates as a measure of user engagement will have to rethink their strategy. Instead, finding alternative ways to measure performance of email campaigns will be necessary to ensure you’re reaching and connecting with your audience.
2. Hide My Email
What it is: Through Hide My Email, users can create a random email that will forward to their own personal email address. This enables users to receive emails without needing to disclose their real email address. Unlike Mail Privacy Protection, Hide My Email is only available to those on the iCloud+ plan.
What it means for users: While temporary email services already exist, Hide My Email provides a permanent solution. Users can easily sign-up with their email without fear of their data being sold or of being flooded with spam messages.
What it means for businesses: Email addresses allow businesses to identify where their consumers are located, what email servers they’re using, as well as other user information. Rather than relying on this kind of data, it’s important to build trust with your user base and allow for a natural sharing of information. This can be done by sending out surveys to users, or by encouraging them to build their own customer profiles through your website.
3. iCloud Private Relay
What it is: Another iCloud+ feature, iCloud Private Relay helps encrypt the traffic from a user’s device whenever they are using Safari. This allows users to freely browse with Safari without having their location, IP address, or internet activity tracked.
What it means for users: Though Private Relay is not a VPN, it may function as an alternative to other VPN services. Users on the iCloud+ plan will not have to worry about their online behavior being tracked or monitored by third party companies.
What it means for businesses: Similar to the other two iOS privacy features, Private Relay prevents websites from collecting user information. However, Private Relay cannot be used across apps, meaning that if your business has its own mobile app, you can still view user information.
iOS 15 aims to further protect the privacy of Apple customers through these newest features, but these changes do not have to negatively impact the way you conduct business. Instead, they present an opportunity for your business to identity creative ways to engage with new and existing users.