Apple iOS released a new update on 26th of March morning for download.
Apple has taken a stance to make it almost impossible for their mobile devices (iPhones’ and iPads’) motions and orientations to power web-based AR and VR experiences for third-parties. According to a document published to Apple’s developer site, the new update of iOS devices, iOS 12.2, will add an attribute under Settings that will enable people using its mobile Safari browser to disable sites from being able to access a device’s accelerometer and gyroscope in order to track the device’s motion and orientation.
At first, when the news of restriction arrived to us, we were assured that motion detection will not be disabled by default, but just gives the users an opportunity to do so. Apple decided differently and closed the doors for these features.
Web Consortium (W3) set the standards for this feature to be used differently and need user's interaction to block, which was also stated in Apple's first documentation of the release, this option was set to be enabled by default.
Currently, all NEXD advertisements that use Gyro are not working properly in iOS 12.2 devices. Do not worry, we still have the functionality for also allowing the users to use touch interaction to interact with these ads by default. This means that before when you were tilting your phone to interact with our Horizontal Panorama layout, then now you have to drag it on iOS.
This change by Apple has caused a lot of bad feelings in not only advertising industry but gaming, VR, AR and overall Web industry.
“I’m sort of freaked out,” said Christopher Lepkowski, technical director at Pretty Big Monster, a digital agency that has worked on web-based AR and VR experiences for brands such as Sony Pictures.
Apple’s change will affect existing experiences that use iOS devices’ accelerometers and gyroscopes. For example, Samsung’s “Samsung Within” web-based interactive experience, developed by R/GA to promote the hardware brand’s legacy and its Galaxy Note 9 phone, uses the accelerometer to let people explore the night sky. “It’s definitely going to break things,” said Kai Tier, executive technology director at R/GA.
"This is a terrible show of distrust to users and companies that try to innovate and change the user experience how content is consumed", said NEXD CTO Erik Tammenurm, "We see that Apple picked their own products over others again, as this update does not affect the functionality for their AR/3D solutions in Safari".
Google has stated that they currently will not follow disabling of device sensors by default, so rest assured – Android and Chrome are not affected by this.
Apple currently has already made changes to their restriction and this update is awaiting new release, but it's release is currently unknown. For now please be aware that all Gyro-based Advertisements work on iOS 12.2 only via touch.
This article will be updated when new information comes in. Until then, please reach out to us if you have any questions on [email protected].