Love the apps installed on your phone? Twitter wants to know all about them.
The social networking company plans to start tracking which apps users have loaded onto their mobile devices in a move that is sure to rankle some users who want to keep their preferences to themselves. In a new post to its help center, the company says it wants access to a user’s “app graph” in order to better recommend people to follow based on shared interests.
Twitter recently began showing people tweets from people its users don’t follow, and this feature would give the company another signal to better find interesting accounts to share with its users.
The tracking, first reported by Re/code, would also give Twitter a new tool to target ads to users. The company is looking for new ways to boost its revenue, and providing advertisers with information about what apps are running on a particular device could allow for better targeting of app install and engagement ads, two categories that have been lucrative for Facebook.
People will be able to opt out of the tracking, though it will be enabled by default. Users will get a prompt informing them that the tracking is turned on, and they can go into the Twitter app’s settings to disable it. (Instructions on how to do so can be found here.) People who only use third-party Twitter clients won’t be affected by the change.
The update will be released to Twitter app users on iOS today, and Android users will receive it next week.