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The proposed embedded personalization engine (EPE) utilizes valuable in-device usage data for inferring mobile user interests in a privacy-preserving manner. To provide users with personalized services, the proposed approach analyzes both the usage data inside a mobile device and service items--such as news articles and mobile apps--using the Open Directory Project (ODP) as a knowledge base. Embedded classification and ranking methodologies effectively match such service items with inferred user interests. The scenario-based evaluation clearly shows that the proposed EPE gives users highly personalized services with both reasonable perceived latency and little energy consumption.