Last modified January 21, 2019 by Gordon Glauser

Should I use Advertising ID to identify users in my Android app?

No. You should not use Advertising ID to identify your users in Swrve.

Why should I not use the Google Advertising ID?

You should not use Advertising ID because it is resettable by the user. When users reset their Advertising ID they look like a new users to the Swrve system. This makes our segmentation, A/B tests and analytic reports incorrect. Incorrect segmentation and A/B tests create negative user experiences by putting the app in a state that is inconsistent with the users’ experience.

What identifier should I use?

You should use a persistent user identifier such as Android ID.

What if my app uses third party advertisers that use Advertising ID?

On August 1st, 2014, Google changed its policies towards using the Advertising ID along side of a persistent ID. This policy is related to advertising only. Swrve is not considered an advertising service, therefore you can still use Advertising ID in your third party advertising SDKs and a persistent ID in Swrve. You cannot however, join data you’ve collected with Swrve using a persistent ID and data you’ve collected with your third party advertising SDKs. That would violate Google’s terms of service as described in this FAQ.

What if I don’t want to use a persistent ID in Swrve?

If you do not want to use a persistent ID, you can use the randomly generated universally unique identifier (UUID) that the Swrve SDK uses by default. The UUID stays consistent for that user unless they uninstall your app. If they reinstall your app, the UUID is regenerated and the user is treated as a new user.

What identifiers do Swrve SDKs use by default?

By default, Swrve’s most recent SDKs use random generated universally unique identifiers (UUIDs) that are stored in the device for future use. Swrve has always used a device ID, unique to the device being used.