Google has confirmed that the end of the cookie will happen later expected. Advertisers have been preparing for the beginning of 2022 to mark the end of third-party cookies for data tracking on Chrome, however, Google is now moving the date to mid-2023.
The reason behind the delay seems to be on the side of the regulators. Google says that this decision is “subject to our engagement with the United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).” And will phase out third-party tracking from mid to late 2023.
What does this mean for advertisers?
Well, it certainly gives advertisers more time. Those who were scrambling to find a cure to tracking their campaigns in a post-cookie world will have a bit more room to find a data tracking model that will work for them.
This may also be positive as regulators step in to stop Google from taking advantage – or at least, more advantage – of other advertisers in data tracking. The removal of third-party cookies puts Google closer to a monopoly as the most used browser and having more time and more eyes on this decision may be net positive for advertisers.
Those who have been working toward a solution should continue what they were doing before. However, just because Google has delayed the removal of cookies doesn’t mean the conversation on personal privacy has come to a halt.
Safari and Firefox are among those who have already removed this tracking from their platforms, although for any real change to be felt, Google's Chrome platform must follow suit due to their dominance in the browser ecosystem.
Depending on where you sit on the privacy discussion, this could be positive or negative.
From an advertising industry perspective, this update would widely be viewed as a gift. As stable and scalable solutions to replace the cookie as we know it are not yet mature, this delay allows for further development and testing. Ultimately, with this small amount of breathing room, we see a path to end cookie dependence prior to mid/end-2023, which, regardless of your perspective on privacy, will be a net positive.