After multiple meetings between Apple and Facebook, the iPhone maker suggested the social media “voluntarily” remove its Onavo Protect app from the App Store. Facebook agreed, according to The Wall Street Journal, and here’s why.
1.) Apple updated its App Store guidelines in June to better protect the privacy of its iPhone, iPad, and iOS users.
2.) Earlier in August, Apple informed Facebook that its Onavo Protect VPN app, which reroutes internet data through Facebook servers that also sifted through that data, violated those new guidelines. Apple also told Facebook the app violated its developer agreement that prevented developers from using data in ways irrelevant to the purpose of the app or provide advertising.
3.) The two companies met multiple times over the issue, including one meeting that took place at Apple Park, according to The Journal.
4.) Those meetings ended with Apple suggesting to Facebook that it voluntarily remove the app from the App Store. You know, before something happened to it.
5.) Facebook took the app down Wednesday. Existing Onavo products can continue to use the app on iOS, but Facebook won’t be able to update the app.
Onavo Protect App
This “free” VPN app was given away with the tagline that it would keep user data safe. Which was true, if you meant from everyone but Facebook. The social media company used data from Onavo Protect to identify trends in user behavior.
Hence violating Apple’s App Store guidelines and developer agreements.
It’s cool, though, because Android users will still be able to enjoy being Facebook products.