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The iOS app's privacy and VoIP data collection

Apple is making a change to its operating system with the release of iOS 13, designed to improve user safety. This change will affect more apps, especially those with VoIP capabilities. Apps with these features should prepare to update accordingly. Failure to do so may result in you being removed from the App Store, which may have a long-term impact on App Store optimization. At the same time, updated apps can use this opportunity to stay ahead of the competition as competing apps are affected by the change.

VoIP Background Data Collection

upcoming change
will affect third party communication apps that use
PushKit, a background VoIP process used to detect incoming calls while the app
is not in use. While PushKit is primarily designed for VoIP calls, it can
potentially being exploited to collect user data even while the apps are closed.

iOS 1

3 will prevent the collection of background data by restricting the process so that it can only be used for calls made over an Internet connection. This is a new security measure, one of many of Apple's latest updates to improve user safety.

This change will affect a number of popular mobile apps,
including Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Snapchat and WeChat. While iOS 13 is
Intended to roll out in September, developers have until April 2020 to secure
their apps are compatible. All apps that do not comply with the updated policy
within that time, there is a risk of removal.

What developers should do

This change targets communication apps that use VoIP
conversations, so developers of such apps should check to see if they're compatible.
Apps that include VoIP calls using PushKit are affected and should be
then change their schedule.

Although an app does not use PushKit to collect data, it should still ensure that the background process can only be used for Internet calls. If there is any chance that the app may collect background data, such functionality should be disabled.

These changes may not be small, but they are necessary. To
for example, Facebook has stated that they do not use PushKit to collect data, however
it is partnering with Apple to ensure that the app is compliant with the new update.

This is one of several security and privacy rules Apple has made in recent months. In May, Apple limited screen time and parental controls. Other upcoming changes with iOS 13 include permissions for questions about location tracking and subscription cancellation, which can help users better control which apps can see them do and what they pay for.

Although developers have until April to adjust their apps, they
should start working on updates and compliance immediately. Failure to do so can
has several consequences for optimizing an app.

Potential Consequences & ASO

First, removal from the App Store can have a long-lasting duration
effects. Even when the app is restored, it will have lost all keywords
rankings and will have to rebuild indexing from scratch. In time it is
down from the store, competitors can get new downloads from today's
and potential users lost the app. For brands with high search volume,
Competitors can run Apple Search Ads campaigns to catch traffic
would otherwise have gone to the app. It takes time to rebuild the apps
rankings, competing apps can continue to grow without setbacks.

In addition, users
care about their security
and privacy. When it is revealed that an app is
relax with confidence, it can affect their ratings and lead to uninstalls. This has
a negative impact on the app's ratings, so the loss in user confidence has a direct effect
impact on the app's ASO.

All VoIP apps, even those not using PushKit, can take this as an opportunity to compete. Keeping up to date on these changes and concentrating on keywords focused on calling apps is important, as the new change can affect a wide range of apps. If developers fall behind in updating their apps, or their functionality is affected by this change, competitors can take advantage of the ability to claim users and lose lost apps.


Apple is constantly tweaking its rules and shutting down potential security exploits, so app developers should be aware of any changes. Apps for VoIP calls should ensure that they comply with the new rules immediately, and if they are not, they must be updated by April next year.

Competitive app developers can take advantage of this opportunity to ensure that they are fully optimized and prepared to bring in users who switch apps as a result of this change. While Facebook is actively working with Apple to ensure compliance, many third-party apps that don't call that opportunity or may be unaware of the change until it's too late. Make sure to update your app to make it compatible. Examine keywords around "free call", "VoIP" and so on as April rolls around. Many apps with these keywords are likely to be removed, which will reduce competition for a while and give you the opportunity to grow.

Make sure your app is not one of those removed and structure your metadata properly to get the most out of it.

Want to know more about App Store Optimization?
Contact Gummicube and
we help you get started with your strategy.

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