Google finally released an update for its Gmail for iOS app on Monday. As you might recall, many of Google’s iOS apps have not been updated for iOS and it is thought that this was done on purpose to avoid having to add App Privacy labels to its apps. Starting on December 8th, any app updated in the App Store has to include its App Privacy Label. Located near the end of each app’s App Store listing, the App Privacy Label shows the data that an app can collect including the data that can be linked to the user’s identity. In the case of Gmail, this data includes Purchases, Location, Contact Info, Contacts, User Content, Search History, Identifiers, Usage Data, Diagnostics, and Other Data.
Google is reportedly being shy about having the App Privacy Label posted for its most popular iOS apps after seeing the criticism Facebook received for posting its longer than average App Privacy Label. Google denied all of this last month and said that it would be updating its iOS apps within weeks. But many of its iOS apps have gone without a recent update and the lack of an update for Gmail resulted in iPhone users being sent a warning earlier this month noting that their Gmail app is out of date. The message said, “You should update this app. The version you’re using doesn’t include the latest security features to keep you protected. Only continue if you understand this.”
Before Monday, it had been about three months since the Gmail app for iOS had received an update; there are still some other Google apps that need to follow suit. But by bringing one of its most popular iOS apps up-to-date, Google has sent a message that says it is not afraid of the App Privacy Label and has started the process of updating its remaining iOS apps.