For the last several years, announcement after announcement, Google has continuously delayed the deprecation of third party cookies. Most recently they announced cookies will be deprecated in 2024. Will that finally be the end date or can we expect more delays? Their tactics are predictable at this point. While Apple and Mozilla ripped the bandaid on cookies, Google’s monopolistic behavior has increasingly illustrated that their focus is on revenue rather than pushing the industry and privacy forward.
Every time I see a new Google announcement on the topic of third party cookie deprecation, I ask myself, “What now?.” Many in the industry feel the same way. Eye rolls, heads shake, and shoulder shrugs are common reactions. Will Google ever deprecate the cookie? Or will I be publishing another one of these articles 5 years from now?
I’ve asked hundreds of clients, prospects, and industry veterans what they think about the topic of third party cookie deprecation. The industry consensus is resoundingly consistent. There will come a time when 3rd party cookies are deprecated but the time horizon is not 2 years, but rather many more years. Google’s unique in owning an AdTech solution unlike Apple and Mozilla who didn’t need the broader ecosystem’s support (though, that may be changing…).
I find myself increasingly in alignment with my industry counterparts. The cookie will still be around in 2025. At the same time, the broader industry will continue to turn towards alternative privacy-centric identity solutions to power targeting, measurement, analytics, attribution, and more. Google will continue to be a major player in the data ecosystem but their monopolistic behavior and product proposals will clash with consumer privacy sentiment.
Maybe we will see another announcement from Google soon that will prove me wrong, but I bet I will still be asking, “will Google deprecate the third party cookie?” for years to come.
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