Google’s plan to phase out third-party cookies in Chrome will be delayed till late 2024 as Google’s “Privacy Sandbox” won’t be ready at the time anticipated by the company.
“By Q3 2023, we expect the Privacy Sandbox APIs to be launched and generally available in Chrome. As developers adopt these APIs, we now intend to begin phasing out third-party cookies in Chrome in the second half of 2024,” said Anthony Chavez, VP, Privacy Sandbox, in his blog post.
Privacy Sandbox timeline
When you visit a website, it can leave files on your computer called cookies. These cookies can store information like what forms you’ve filled out, how long you’ve been on the website, or if you’re logged in. However, most of the time cookies are used to track your activities across the internet so that companies can show you ads based on what websites you’ve visited. Usually, first-party cookies are helpful because they’re needed for the website to work properly. Third-party cookies are usually just used for advertising and tracking, and you don’t have much control over what those companies do with that data.
“Improving people’s privacy, while giving businesses the tools they need to succeed online, is vital to the future of the open web. That’s why we started the Privacy Sandbox initiative to collaborate with the ecosystem on developing privacy-preserving alternatives to third-party cookies and other forms of cross-site tracking,” said Anthony.
Privacy Sandbox for the Web will block third-party cookies and limit covert tracking. It will provide publishers with safer alternatives to existing technology by creating new web standards, enabling them to build digital businesses while your data stays private. Privacy Sandbox for Android will bring in new technology that operates without cross-app identifiers helping apps to remain free through ads while your data stays protected.
Google is working to refine the design proposals based on inputs from developers, publishers, marketers, and regulators. Based on the most consistent feedback it received, more time is required to evaluate and test the new Privacy Sandbox technologies before phasing out third-party cookies in Chrome.
Also, as per Google’s agreement with the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) on how to develop and release the Privacy Sandbox in Chrome worldwide, it must ensure that the Privacy Sandbox provides effective, privacy-preserving technologies and the industries get sufficient time to adopt these new solutions. Google’s approach of transitioning from third-party cookies ensures that the web can continue to expand, without depending on cross-site tracking identifiers or covert techniques like fingerprinting.
Therefore, Google will be expanding the testing windows for the Privacy Sandbox APIs before disabling third-party cookies in Chrome.