Twitter is to start monitoring the apps users have on their smartphones, in order to better target content.
Users with Twitter installed on their smartphone, and whose settings allow access to their device, will have the list of apps on their devices tracked by the microblogging service.
The company stressed that it is not collecting any data from within apps.
Twitter will use the ‘app graph’ data to promote content within users’ timelines that is most likely to interest them. This could potentially include app install and engagement ads.
Other uses include improved ‘who to follow’ suggestions, and delivery of tweets, accounts or other content deemed to be of interest.
Users will be informed that Twitter is tracking the apps on their smartphone as well as the way in which the information is used. Apps will not be monitored prior to users seeing the notification.
The app tracking can be stopped by adjusting their device preferences. If a user turns off the monitoring capability, the data will be removed with no further collection taking place.
Those that have previously opted out of interest-based ads by turning on ‘Limit Ad Tracking’ on iOS or ‘Opt out of interest-based ads’ on their Android devices, will not have the titles on their device monitored.
TechCrunch noted that Twitter is working to personalise user timelines in an effort to engage passive users who rarely sign in or tweet.