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Apple Appears to Taunt Google and Amazon With Giant Ad at CES

Apple just put its privacy policy in terms Las Vegas can understand.

In a 13-story ad overlooking the Las Vegas Convention Center, where the Consumer Electronics Show kicks off on Tuesday, the company proclaimed, “What happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone.” The ad appears to be a dig at Apple competitors Google and Amazon, who are expected to dominate CES this year and who have come under scrutiny in recent months for how they treat (or mistreat) their customers’ data.

Apple has come out strong to defend consumers’ privacy. CEO Tim Cook has called privacy a “human right” and a “civil liberty” that he says Apple has chosen to respect despite the money it could make if it sold customers’ information.

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An Apple ad that appears aimed at its competitors stands out amid the Las Vegas skyline. ROBYN BECK AFP/Getty Images
Robyn Beck—AFP/Getty Images

Although CES is the world’s biggest technology show, it doesn’t typically draw big announcements from major companies like Apple, Amazon, or Google. But the rise of voice-activated digital assistants has given these companies a stake in the products that come out of CES as they vie to dominate the market. With more than a quarter of American adults expected to take up the technology in the next year, digital assistant compatibility in new technologies is a giant opportunity for all involved.

Amazon has about 32% of the smart speaker market, while Google’s grip is 30%. According to data through Q3 2018, Apple isn’t even a major player.