Privacy: Android vs iOS

What do you think about privacy on (stock) Android vs on iOS?

Personally, despite Apple’s marketing, they seem to be pretty similar, what are your thoughts?

I think it’s just personal preference as you configure both settings, But it depends on your threat model. I would also recommend disabling anything google but that’s up to you :slight_smile:

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Hard to say. Stock Android from what vendor? What apps are installed?

On basically every stock Android, Google gets your data. This can be compared to Apple’s data collection.
On a lot of phones, you have an extra trust party (like Samsung) that collects extra data.
On iOS applications often times have a harder time collecting data.
iCloud and so on are not taken into account, as I do not have enough knowledge about them.

So in most cases iOS will be better than stock Android. There might be exceptions (e.g. on the Google Pixel phones), but that’s it.
Stock Android generally is worse than iOS in terms of privacy and security.

I was thinking on Pixel phones

Just flash GOS! Unironically, use the bs “I need GAPPS” apps in one profile and everything else in another, better for your security and privacy than stock Android and iOS.

If we talk about Stock, yeah probably just use iOS. The ability to stop app tracking is really good.

Security & privacy is basically like this:

GOS > iOS > Stock Android > most Android custom ROMs

Couldn’t you just turn off the Android ad ID and have basically the same thing?

Well sure, but then your phone is close to unusable. And Google still knows who you are.
The only thing changing would be that less apps now work.

I have been turning it off for ages on multiple phones with no issues

Stock android by AOSP does not have any google services whatsoever.

No. Wrong. They have pretty much the same features. (Stock Android)

I do disagree with this. Lots of Android phones still are behind on security updates, lots also are behind feature updates (like configuring storage scope).

E.g. if you install Facebook on an Android device, you can expect Facebook to get much more data about you than if you installed it on an iPhone.

If we talk about stock Android vs stock iOS (without any apps), it is pretty much the same. I just answer questions with a “what would a normal user do on their phone?” mindset. And on this note, iOS sadly is better. If used properly on a proper phone, it is basically neck in neck tho.

Stock Android mate…not the shitshow done by Samsung and others.

Nope. Android sandbox is pretty solid too.

But that is what most people experience. Nearly nobody uses a clean Android install, most are on these bad 3rd party versions. Android phone manufacturer market share | AppBrain apparently about 35% of Android installations are Samsungs.

Doesn’t change the fact that most apps ask for full storage access and most people simply grant it, as one example. While the sandbox is amazing, the users can give apps access to more than they need more easily than on iOS. To me, this is privacy as well.
If you use your device smartly, iOS and Android should be about the same. I just do not think that most people on stock Android (or iOS) to actually care enough to get into these “deep” settings, they just accept whatever the apps throws at them. At least this is my experience with most people I have met IRL so far.

Or in short, based on my knowledge and experience with people:

I hope this clarifies why I say that iOS is more pirvate.

User Type Android iOS 3rd Party Android
Accepts everything Less private More private Least private
Accepts "only during usage" About the same About the same Less private
Accepts only what is needed About the same About the same Less private

People should be aware what permissions they give to apps. Higher SDK Apps have more finegrained permissions that really limit these stuff.

Can we leave it at " ‘Remarkably similar’ data collection"?

Quote from here New study reveals iPhones aren't as private as you think | Tom's Guide

Yeah, I have the advertising ID turned off on my phone (Pixel 6, stock Android) and it affected nothing else on the device. Turning this off is one of the easiest privacy wins you can make on Android with one of the biggest impacts. So much of the tracking that happens from third parties seems to happen through the advertising ID, including the location data that’s used in the recently uncovered Fog Reveal software that police departments use to track people’s whereabouts going back 180 days.

Google Play services will still be running (so nothing changed from what Google knows), but turning off the advertising ID doesn’t affect functionality.