Bloomberg reports this morning that a German court has ordered Apple to change its policies regarding how customer information is handled. Apple can’t request “global consent” to use customer data, the court ruled, nor can it leverage location information. And the court rejected Apple’s policies for sharing customer data for advertising purposes.
This isn’t exactly a nightmare for Apple, of course: The ruling applies only to Germany, and the iPhone maker will surely appeal. But if it stands it will likely impact a wide variety of players in the ecosystem, from ad networks who use customer data to deliver targeted pitches to app developers whose business models are built on ad dollars. Each of those players may have to find ways to comply with the court’s ruling if they want to continue to do business in Germany. The growing problem of privacy in mobile data doesn’t affect only platform providers like Apple and Google.