Apple collects the least user data, Google amasses the most – study

Apple collects the least amount of private user data from its users, with Google, Twitter, Amazon, and Facebook collecting more personal user data, new analysis of major tech giants’ personal data collection finds.

Apple collects the least user data, Google amasses the most - study

Sami Fathi for MacRumors:

The study measured how many data points each company collects from its users. The study found that Google topped the list, collecting a total of 39 data points for each of its users. Twitter and Amazon follow by collecting 24 and 23 data points for each user, respectively.

Apple is at the bottom of the list and only collects 12 data points for each user, according to the study. Apple, unlike Google, relies much more heavily on on-device machine learning and algorithms to dictate personalization features, such as personalized music recommendations for Apple Music and curated photos in Photos.


Besides users’ information, Google stores a significant amount of data on several domains. If it is data, there is a strong probability that Google is collecting it. This includes anything from users’ specific location to your browser history. Moreover, it stores user activity on third-party websites or apps and the emails on users’ Gmail accounts.

The fact that Google keeps users’ specific locations is a great concern. Due to its importance in tying consumers’ online and offline profiles, location data is a hotly debated topic in data privacy.

Some people have resolved to use DuckDuckGo as their primary search engine. This is because the search engine promises not to store any user data.

MacDailyNews Take: In a related study, researchers found that water is wet.

Apple allows users to easily switch to the privacy-respecting DuckDuckGo search engine on Safari:

1. Click Safari in the top menu bar.
2. Select Preferences.
3. Click on Search.
4. Select DuckDuckGo.

iOS / iPadOS:
1. Open Settings.
2. Navigate to and tap on Safari.
3. Tap on Search Engine.
4. Select DuckDuckGo.

Please help support MacDailyNews. Click or tap here to support our independent tech blog. Thank you!

Shop The Apple Store at Amazon.


  1. Now then…

    Goggle admits they collect your data in exchange for goods and services. It’s how you pay.

    With Apple you pay in money. That they collect any data at all is a double charge and a violation of trust.

    1. It is only “double charging” if they sell that data or are otherwise remunerated for collecting it by a third party. As for a violation of trust, they do tell you what they collect and ask your permission to do so. The study says nothing about how the data is used by each company (for Apple, they mention “Apple only stores the information that is necessary to maintain users’ accounts” while for other companies it states they collect data for advertising purposes.)

  2. Goog has long been a lech and remains so. AAPL has long had a better record re: privacy, but their score is falling. Anecdotally, one can sense AAPL’s need to control in areas/ways that were never so in the past. Possessing/accruing info and control are bed-partners. It points to the real virus of our culture.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.