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Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp displayed on an iPhone. Photo: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Apps on Apple products can now send push notifications for ads and promotions as long as customers explicitly opt in to get those alerts, according to the company's updated App Store guidelines.

Why it matters: Apple has long prevented ads in notifications. Including marketing material alongside alerts for personal messages and breaking news runs the risk of further cluttering peoples' feeds.

Separately, Apple also made a few other changes to its App Store rules:

  • Apple will reject pitches for "fortune telling" and dating apps "unless they provide a unique, high-quality experience," citing an over-saturation of those apps.
  • App developers now must use Apple's own API for prompting customer reviews. In the past, developers could push app users to review products by asking leading questions.

Go deeper: Apple's growth areas rely on its shrinking iPhone business

Go deeper

Updated 18 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Harris breaks tie as Senate proceeds with lengthy debate on COVID relief bill

Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

The Senate on Thursday voted 51-50 — with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie — to proceed to debate on President Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus rescue package, likely setting up a final vote this weekend.

The state of play: Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) forced Senate clerks to read the entire 628-page bill on the floor, which took nearly 11 hours and lasted until 2:05 a.m. Friday. The Senate then adjourned and is expected to reconvene at 9 a.m. to debate the bill before considering amendments.

1 hour ago - Health

Cuomo advisers reportedly altered July COVID-19 nursing homes report

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Photo: Seth Wenig/AFP via Getty Images

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's advisers successfully pushed state health officials to exclude certain data on the number of COVID-19 nursing home deaths from a July report, the Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday.

Why it matters: The changes resulted in a "significant undercount of the death toll attributed to the state’s most vulnerable population," the WSJ wrote.

Ro Khanna wary of Biden approach on Middle East

Rep. Ro Khanna. Photo: Cody Glenn/Sportsfile for Web Summit via Getty Images

An outspoken progressive Democrat is wary of President Biden’s approach to the Middle East, arguing it’s like “conceding defeat of the aspiration” to win a Nobel Peace Prize.

Why it matters: A number of members of Biden’s own party dislike his Middle East strategy, as his administration signals the region is no longer the priority it was for President Obama and his predecessors.

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