Twitter’s new App Graph to track apps users have downloaded onto their phones

27 Nov 2014

Twitter is to begin monitoring the apps that users have downloaded onto their phones via a new service called App Graph. By doing so the social network says it will be able to deliver a more tailored service for users.

What that actually translates into is the more Twitter knows about its users the more money it will make selling ads.

Twitter said that its App Graph platform will only collect the list of applications users have installed and will not be collecting any data within the applications.

“To help build a more personal Twitter experience for you, we are collecting and occasionally updating the list of apps installed on your mobile device so we can deliver tailored content that you might be interested in.

“If you’re not interested in a tailored experience you can adjust your preferences at any time. Additionally, if you have previously opted out of interest-based ads by turning on ‘Limit Ad Tracking’ on your iOS device or by adjusting your Android device settings to ‘Opt out of interest-based ads,’ we will not collect your apps unless you adjust your device settings.”

Suits you, sir?

So in return for making it easier for Twitter to sell more ads, what does the user get in return? What does this tailored experience look like?

The social network said the App Graph will result in improved “who to follow” suggestions, the adding by Twitter of tweets, accounts or content to users’ timeline it thinks the user will find especially interesting and “showing you more relevant promoted content.”

The setting will be turned off until users receive a notification from Twitter in the form of a prompt letting users know that their Twitter experience will be more tailored if Twitter has access to the list of apps on their device.

If users don’t wish to opt into the App Graph and switch it off there are instructions here for Android and iOS devices.

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Mobile apps image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years