Google announced that third-party cookies are over — at least, as far as its ad networks and Chrome browser are concerned. This represents a significant change for the ad business and seems to be a step forward for privacy, but it’s also a limited one. It doesn’t mean that Google will stop collecting your data, and it doesn’t mean the company will stop using your data to target ads.
What Google will stop doing is selling web ads targeted to individual users’ browsing habits, and its Chrome browser will no longer allow cookies that collect that data. Ad companies that rely on cookies will have to find another way to target users; Google thinks it already has. Meanwhile, Google will still track and target users on mobile devices, and it will still target ads to users based on their behavior on its own platforms, which make up the majority of its revenue and won’t be affected by the change. In other words, while the announcement will have huge implications for the digital ad industry, it probably won’t for Google itself.