Facebook says Apple its restoring a key developer tool

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On Wednesday, Apple turned off Facebook's ability to run iOS apps internally after it discovered the social network had violated its guidelines.

In a statement, Facebook said it is "in the process of getting our internal apps up and running". It's unclear how this will impact that deal when renewal discussions begin.

NOT CONTENT WITH giving Facebook a slap for sneaky use of certificates, Apple has turned its attention to Google.

Google and Facebook employees can once again use private iOS apps after Apple reinstated the necessary enterprise certificates. Public betas are supposed to be available through Apple's TestFlight platform, and other public iOS apps are only allowed to be distributed by the App Store. Users earn gift cards for sideloading an Enterprise Certificate-based VPN app that allows Google to monitor and analyze their traffic and data, tracking what they watch and what devices they watch it on. A bunch of iPhone and iPad users who have yet to upgrade to iOS 12 report that they are unable to connect to the App Store, Apple Music, and a variety of other Apple services. Employee-only apps including the Gbus iOS transportation app and the company's internal cafe app have also conked out. After it was revealed that both Google and Facebook were violating the Cupertino firm's developer rules, both companies had access to their internal iOS apps temporarily revoked.

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Google voluntarily shuttered its own app in question, Screenwise Meter, yesterday after press attention and publicly apologized. Apple has taken a tough stand on the issue, saying tech companies should protect the privacy of user data, not seek to harvest it and profit from it. Facebook and Google, meanwhile, have built their entire businesses on monetizing their users' activity through advertising. This app is completely voluntary and always has been. "Facebook has been using their membership to distribute a data-collecting app to consumers, which is a clear breach of their agreement with Apple".

Flouting Apple's privacy rules have reportedly resulted in severe consequences for the social media giant. He also characterized data collection practices by companies such as Google and Facebook as "surveillance".

The reference to encrypted data is meant to differentiate Google's app from Facebook Research, which Facebook said could collect data in some instances "even where the app uses encryption, or from within secure browser sessions". Many Google employees use Android devices, so Apple's move was likely tougher on Facebook.

Do you think Apple punished Facebook and Google in the right way in this instance? Google isn't just a competitor - it pays Apple billions of dollars each year to be the default search engine provider for the Safari web browser on iPhones, iPads, and Macs.

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