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Apple focus on app tracking transparency drives advertisers to spend more on Android

Apple focus on app tracking transparency drives advertisers to spend more on Android

A few months after the introduction of Apple's App Tracking Transparency (ATT), it seems that advertisers are moving to Android according to figures reported by an ad analytics firm.

(Picture: Reuters) (Picture: Reuters)
Story highlights
  • Before iOS 14.5, tracking by apps was turned on by default.
  • Under ATT rules, the advertisers are required to take consent from users for tracking them for targeted ads.
  • Facebook which was initially critical of ATT has now noted that its impact on the company's business will be manageable.

Apple started rolling out its new App Tracking Transparency (ATT) rules with iOS 14.5 for enhanced user privacy. Under ATT rules, the advertisers are required to take consent from users for tracking them for targeted ads. The App Tracking Transparency gives control to users over whether an app can track their online and iPhone activities and use the collected data for personalised ads. Before iOS 14.5, tracking by apps was turned on by default. But users get to choose now. In case they do not want to be tracked, they can ask the app not to track them.

A few months after the introduction, it seems that advertisers are moving to Android according to figures reported by an ad analytics firm. Wall Street Journal quoted figures from ad analytics firm Tenjin noting that spending on iOS ad platforms dropped by approximately one-third between June and July and the advertising Android platforms increased by approximately 10 per cent at that time. It also spoke about ad agency Tinuiti, where advertisers could no longer bid for targeted advertising on iOS. This resulted in a rise in demand for targeted advertising on Android devices, moving from 46 per cent year-on-year growth in May to 64 per cent in June.

Tinuiti research director Andy Taylor told the publication that iOS spending dropped from 42 per cent growth in May to 25 per cent in June and even though both Android and iOS were seeing growth, the rate for iOS dropped since ATT's introduction, while that of Android has risen. Android ad prices are now roughly 30 per cent higher than ads aimed at iOS users, Taylor added.

According to Branch Metrics, less than one-third of iOS users opt into tracking, thereby limiting the number of user devices that can be tracked by apps.Facebook was critical of Apple's new privacy policy for the longest time. The social media giant even started showing a popup within its iOS app to urge users to allow tracking because that "helps keep Facebook free of charge." Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has earlier called Apple one of its biggest competitors and has even urged users to accept tracking when they do see the privacy notification with the iOS update "for a better ad experience."

However, the social media giant seems to have changed its stance since and has noted that iOS 14.5's impact on its business will be manageable. Reports note that Facebook users in foreign countries use Android which could benefit Facebook due to the pricing of non-iOS platforms.