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Google’s Privacy Sandbox, which replaces cookies, reaches general availability

Google’s Chrome browser has now taken an important step towards its goal of phasing out third-party cookies by the end of 2024. In a press release today, the search giant announced that its relevance APIs and measurement tools for Privacy Sandbox, its privacy-preserving alternative to cross-site tracking cookies – are now generally available. This means that the APIs are available by default in Chrome, without setting browser flags and without participating in a trial.

Google says 3% of Chrome users will be waived for now to allow the company to A/B test, expanding general API availability to 100% of users “over the next few month “.

Chrome also released new ad privacy controls that allow users to manage Privacy Sandbox features, such as customizing or opting out of relevant ad topics that you may be targeted with. Most Chrome users shouldn’t see a noticeable difference in their browsing experience following this step, as it’s intended for developers. Using the Privacy Sandbox APIs now generally available in Chrome, developers and ad vendors can assess the readiness for the planned deprecation of third-party cookies at scale across their products and services.

Google says it has received “a lot of industry feedback” on the Privacy Sandbox APIs and isn’t expected to make any significant changes until third-party cookies are deprecated in the second half of next year. Before that, it plans to disable third-party cookie support for 1% of Chrome users in Q1 2024, and an “opt-in test mode” that allows developers to simulate cookie deprecation for the purposes of test is expected to be released later this year. .