Excellent observation by Neil Cybart on the difference between Google and Apple, taken from his daily newsletter ‘Above Avalon‘:
I get nervous when people directly compare the two and simply conclude that Apple is in an inferior position simply because it is charging money for its products and not depending on data to sell or monetize in some way down the road. Such a comparison is naive and inaccurate.
Apple doesn’t need to know everything about you to be successful. That means you pay for its products and can enjoy your privacy. Google can only continue to exist if it knows as much as possible about you. That is why you get (most of) its products for free. The fact that Google Photos is free and Apple iCloud photo hosting isn’t says something about each company’s goals.
Remember: If you are not paying for it, you’re not the customer; you’re the product being sold.