ActionDash purchase by Sensor Tower could raise privacy concerns

JC Torres - Jun 22, 2020, 5:12am CDT
ActionDash purchase by Sensor Tower could raise privacy concerns

Chris Lacy is one of the more prominent indie Android app developers that have remained active in recent years. Best known for his Action Launcher, Lacy has also authored other popular Android apps such as Link Bubble and ActionDash. The latter was his response to Google’s Digital Wellbeing which, while useful, was severely limited in its compatibility. Now, however, Lacy has announced its sale but the app’s buyer could raise red flags for some more privacy-conscious users.

This isn’t the first time Lacy sold an app. Link Bubble, which used Android’s floating bubble feature to load links in the background, was sold to a still-unnamed US startup. This time, ActionDash was acquired by Sensor Tower, the company best known for its mobile market insights and stats.

Lacy goes over the reasons why he sold off the app, which basically boiled down to seeing an opportunity to focus on his current top-secret project. The developer presents the acquisition as a win for ActionDash users as prices have gone down, more premium features have been made available for everyone, and, best of all, no more ads!

Lacy also notes that Sensor Tower’s business model aligns with his own company’s privacy policies, which might strike some as odd given Sensor Tower’s recent privacy-related scandal it was involved in. In a nutshell, Sensor Tower used a variety of VPN and ad blocker apps that collected user some Internet traffic and data without informing users about it or the apps’ association with Sensor Tower.

The company has since then apologized for what they characterized as a lapse in judgment in disclosing their apps due to competitive reasons. It may have gotten off with a slap on the wrist back then but with ActionDash it may not have to resort to third-party apps to get the data it needs for its analytics anyway.


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