Apple is making changes to the way iOS works that will restrict the way apps work in the background. This will especially affect the way messaging apps like WhatsApp and WeChat work. Developers of these apps will also have until April 2020 to update their apps to work with Apple’s restrictions.
As it is now, VoIP features on such apps can run in the background when not in use, allowing them to connect calls faster. According to The Information, messaging apps like WhatsApp also use VoIP in other ways. One of this is implementing end-to-end encryption. But because they run in the background, this also allows them to do other things like collect data.
In the future, Apple will only allow background access to be used for VoIP calls, and nothing else. The restriction will mean that messaging apps developers will have to find another way to implement end-to-end encryptions. This will be hitting Facebook a little harder than others as it has the feature a number of apps, including Facebook Messenger.
For what it’s worth, Facebook claims that it never used the API for collecting data. A company spokesperson told the Information “we are using the PushKit VoIP API to deliver a world-class, private messaging experience, not for the purpose of collecting data.”