Google Reveals Chrome's Third-Party Cookie Phaseout Date

Google said Thursday it will begin testing a new feature on its Chrome browser as part of a plan to ban third-party cookies that advertisers use to track consumers.

On January 4, Google will roll out Tracking Protection to 1% of Chrome users globally. The feature will restrict cross-site tracking by default. The complete phaseout will occur in the second half of 2024.

If the site does not function properly without third-party cookies, Google said users can temporarily turn cookies back on for 90 days if needed, with a symbol to the right of the address bar. Chrome will prompt the marketer to do this if any issues are detected with a site, using indicators such as multiple page refreshes.



Google began testing the removal of third-party cookies with the latest version of Chrome that launched in early December. 

In November, Johann Hofmann, senior software engineer at Google, published an in-depth series of processes that the company will take to complete its transition to Privacy Sandbox for the web. At that time, he did not have an exact date. 

Hofmann kept the ball rolling, and on December 5, Adam Gertenbach, lead product architect at Axis Group, wrote in the string how Axis is re-reviewing the impacts of the third0party cookie deprecation on several embedded solutions his company works with now that registration for trials have begun.

"As one might expect, these embedded solutions are often reliant on a combination of iframes and cross domain third-party cookies to supply authentication and authorization and cannot be made to operate under a single domain," he wrote. "While we intend to actively engage with these vendors to notify them of expected breakage due to the pending deprecation and would hope that options for partitioning/CHIPS will make its way into these products in a timely fashion, there is a significant risk that existing solutions will be impacted in the interim period."

He also explained how the customer perception around this "breakage" will likely impact Axis's reputation based on the company's role, although it does not and cannot directly resolve underlying issues the company is experiencing without third-party participation and product updates.

Bill Simmons -- vice president for product at The Trade Desk, a DSP with an opposing view and technology of Google's strategy -- referred to Privacy Sandbox as “the anti-moonshot.” In a blog post on the TTD-operated site The Current, he writes that Google missed an opportunity in the way it reinvested privacy controls. He believes Sandbox will obscure the identity data about individual users and make it more difficult to coordinate advertising across devices and measure and optimize performance.

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