Android users set for huge security upgrade via new update

What you need to know about Google's Privacy Sandbox

Android phone with security symbols in background
(Image credit: SOPA Images / Getty Images)

Google is preparing a new major security update for all Android smartphones that is set to significantly improve user privacy on the devices. 

The new update will be introduced under Google's Privacy Sandbox which will look to remove the "advertising ID" that is currently assigned to each Android device in favour of a new targeting mechanism. The multi-year goal is to remove ad tracking, something that has become more and more of a concern with how Google handles data. 

Privacy Sandbox is made up of FLEDGE (First Locally-Executed Decision over Groups Experiment), which was built to protect user privacy by limiting ad and bidstream data. Google Topic is also another contributing factor, a browser-based system that establishes user interests based on the websites they visit. Basically, the idea is that you will get custom ads based on your browsing history. 

Google previously made it so anyone could opt out of having a unique identifier, in another attempt to help with privacy. 

"​​We realise that other platforms have taken a different approach to ads privacy, bluntly restricting existing technologies used by developers and advertisers. We believe that – without first providing a privacy-preserving alternative path – such approaches can be ineffective and lead to worse outcomes for user privacy and developer businesses," said Google vice president of product management Anthony Chavez (via a blog post). 

"Our goal with the Privacy Sandbox on Android is to develop effective and privacy enhancing advertising solutions, where users know their information is protected, and developers and businesses have the tools to succeed on mobile. While we design, build and test these new solutions, we plan to support existing ads platform features for at least two years, and we intend to provide substantial notice ahead of any future changes."

No release date was shared by Google regarding the introduction of Privacy Sandbox on mobile, likely as the company is still working on how the software will work without an ID being attached to an account. That said, any new update that looks to better user privacy is always a good thing. 

Anyone that owns a Samsung Galaxy S22 is also in luck with the tech giant recently implementing a new update that looks to target performance, among other bug fixes. Meanwhile, those with an Apple iPhone and iPad were treated to a new update that is perfect for anyone that loves making movies.  

Matt Poskitt
Freelance Writer

Matt is a freelance writer for T3, covering news and keeping up with everything games, entertainment, and all manner of tech. You can find his work across numerous sites across the web, including TechRadar, IGN, GamesRadar, Tom's Guide, Fandom, NME, and more. In his spare time, Matt is an avid cinema-goer, keen runner and average golfer (at best). You can follow him @MattPoskitt64