iOS 14 Guide


Note: You should update your analytics-ios and device-mode destinations to adapt to iOS 14 changes explained in this guide.

In June 2020, Apple made several privacy-related announcements at WWDC20 about its upcoming iOS 14 release, including changes to the collection and use of Identifier for Advertising (IDFA). These changes require developers to ask for user consent before collecting IDFA to track users across multiple applications.

Segment fundamentally agrees with Apple’s stance. The world is becoming more privacy-conscious, and we believe that every single one of us will have right to own our own data. The best companies are the ones using this data in responsible ways.

Apple released iOS 14 in the autumn of 2020, but delayed the IDFA changes until early 2021. Segment products, including Connections, Protocols, Personas (including Identity Resolution), and Privacy, Data Lakes, and Cloud Sources, do not rely on IDFA and so are not affected by these platform changes. However, Segment’s iOS Source SDK (analytics-ios) and any destinations that previously used IDFA require that you update them so they continue to work with iOS 14.

Segment updated the iOS Source SDK (analytics-ios) and any affected destinations so they support Apple’s iOS platform changes. The Segment iOS SDK (analytics-ios) has been updated to version 4 with v4.1 released as stable.

This major version release includes the following (API compatible) updates:

Segment no longer automatically collects IDFA.

Previously, the Segment SDK collected the IDFA as the context.device.advertisingId value for each event if the user enabled ad-tracking. The Segment SDK no longer automatically collects the IDFA after version 4. (If your implementation requires the IDFA for compatibility with specific destinations, see the section below.)

Due to this major change, you should upgrade to the latest stable version of analytics-ios. (v4.1 at the time of this writing)

You can manually pass the IDFA to the Segment SDK.

If you need to collect the user’s IDFA to pass it to specific destinations, or for other uses, you can follow the steps for Ad Tracking and IDFA in the iOS documentation to collect and pass IDFA as a configuration item to the Segment SDK.

Remember, under iOS 14, applications can only collect the IDFA from a user if they consent to make it available. The Segment example code, used along with Apple’s documentation, make it easy for developers to collect and pass the IDFA to the Segment SDK as a configuration item on app load.

All device-mode destination SDKs require an update.

Due to major changes to core Segment SDKs for version 4, all device-mode destination SDKs have been updated. You should update all device-mode integrations and their bundled SDK packages accordingly.

Segment’s integrations have been updated to support Apple’s iOS 14 changes.

Several integration partners made their own updates to support Apple’s iOS 14 platform changes. Segment integrations for both device- and cloud-mode now have the most recent changes from affected integration partners:

  1. Amplitude
  2. Braze
  3. Adjust
  4. AppsFlyer
  5. Google Ads
  6. Facebook App Events

Additional affected integration partners are in the process of making changes, and these will be included in future updates.

If you discover an integration affected by Apple’s iOS 14 changes, but is not listed above or does not have updates, contact customer support.

This page was last modified: 26 Oct 2020

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