Photo: Apple

Many of the changes coming to Apple's operating system this fall are nice-to-have tweaks rather than big, bold changes. However, the announcement of Sign In with Apple stands out.

Why it matters: Apple's service is similar to ones already offered by Facebook and Google. But Sign In with Apple is making privacy an explicit feature and doing so in a way that will make it tough for its competitors.

  • Apple isn't looking to gather data or make money from its effort.
  • It's offering features that should appeal to both developers and consumers.
  • It's making Apple sign-on a mandatory option when iPhone developers offer third party-options, such as those from Facebook or Google.

Details: This service will work on Apple devices and on any website that adds Apple's button, letting consumers use their Apple ID as a means of authentication.

  • App developers will get only limited information — as little as a unique, random ID — with consumers having the option to share their real e-mail or just a proxy that will be managed by Apple.

What they're saying:

  • Apple CEO Tim Cook talked more about the sign-in service in an interview with CBS' Norah O'Donnell. Cook downplayed the competitive angle, although there's little doubt who Sign In with Apple targets.
"We’re not really taking a shot at anybody. We focus on the user. And the user wants the ability to go across numerous properties on the web without being under surveillance. We’re moving privacy protections forward. And I actually think it’s a very reasonable request for people to make."
  • Twitter product head Sriram Krishnan: "This 'Sign in with Apple' feature is *huge*. Anonymous sign in without any of the privacy baggage."

Go deeper: What Apple, Facebook and Google each mean by "privacy"

Go deeper

Amy Harder, author of Generate
3 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Climate change goes mainstream in presidential debate

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty

The most notable part of Thursday’s presidential debate on climate change was the fact it was included as a topic and assumed as a fact.

The big picture: This is the first time in U.S. presidential history that climate change was a featured issue at a debate. It signals how the problem has become part of the fabric of our society. More extreme weather, like the wildfires ravaging Colorado, is pushing the topic to the front-burner.

Finally, a real debate

Photo: Morry Gash/AP

A more disciplined President Trump held back from the rowdy interruptions at tonight's debate in Nashville, while making some assertions so outlandish that Joe Biden chuckled and even closed his eyes. A Trump campaign adviser told Axios: "He finally listened." 

The result: A real debate.

Biden to Trump: "I have not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life"

Former VP Joe Biden pushed back Thursday against allegations from President Trump, saying he had never profited from foreign sources. "Nothing was unethical," Biden told debate moderator Kristen Welker about his son Hunter's work in Ukraine while he was vice president.

Why it matters: Earlier on Thursday, Hunter Biden's former business partner, Tony Bobulinski, released a statement saying Joe Biden's claims that he never discussed overseas business dealings with his son were "false."

Get Axios AM in your inbox

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!