The Impact of iOS 15 on Mobile Advertising

The digital mobile tech giants are launching updates one after another to fully facilitate the users and improve the user experience. Apple and Google both have lately quite frequently updated the OS for mobile and addressed the concerns of users. These updates, however, have shaken the core of any top mobile app monetization platform, alongside the best mobile ad networks for publishers. The reason is strict privacy changes that have changed the face of the mobile digital world.

Publishers who once carelessly opted for Best Mobile App Monetization, today think twice about its execution. Similar is the case with mobile advertisers, or I would say it is very crucial. In-app advertising has changed much with the launch of Apple’s updates. The recent iOS 15 updates have added fuel to the fire.

Where the mobile advertisers and publishers world was already combating the after-effects of iOS 14, iOS 15 made it more difficult. But what was iOS 14 all about?

The iOS 14 update

The iOS 14 update by Apple was all about refining the ATT (App Tracking Transparency) policies. By doing so Apple very smartly restricted mobile apps from tracking any chunks of data, whether for serving ads or improvements. The update disabled the IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers) from being shared. Any app that tried to fetch the IDFA after the update would only receive a string of zeros rather than the original ID.

With this major change rolling out, multiple mobile app monetization platforms started looking for a way out. Not just this, apple also significantly made matters difficult for mobile ad mediation platforms around the world. The IDFA was no less than gold for mobile advertisers and publishers as it fetched user behaviors, demographics, and much more.

But Apple soon opened a way out. The mobile apps were not at once restricted from tracking. Rather, the controls were given in the hands of iPhone users. They had all the freedom whether to ‘Opt In’ for the privacy changes or not. Hence, the users responded to checkboxes before using any new app whether to enable it for data tracking or not.    

This change impacted the $189 billion mobile advertising industry globally. However, the opt-ins have been low for the time being, which means this impact is expected to grow. Now with iOS 15 on the rolls, greater changes are expected to be seen.

The iOS 15 update

The privacy handles have expanded from just ATT to other in-built features and facilities of iPhones. Apple with the iOS 15 update is hitting new dimensions of leveraging privacy for its users and catering to transparency at most. Here is what the hype is all about:

Email Privacy Protection

Emails today are not just bulks of texts making into your inbox but are rather highly formatted messages used for marketing. The rich formatted emails contain embedded images and videos that transfer your IP (internet protocol address) to the marketers. All these extracted cookies revolve around the web to ensure targeted messages reach out to the right audience.

The iOS 15 has changed the process for the sake of the user’s privacy.  Now when an email is opened, the marketer receives a random Apple ID instead of the original IP. This is being practised to make users invisible for the marketers. No more pixels or cookies will be installed within a user’s system without his/her permission. 

On-Device Speech Recognition

A major breakthrough by Apple, the iOS 15 has changed the dynamics of speech processing on Apple devices. Speech traditionally was processed over online servers for analysis. These raw audio files are transferred onto the remote servers for further processing. However, this was a greater privacy risk.

Apple has removed servers out of this process and enabled speech recognition on devices. This ensures greater privacy for users as no word said to Siri will now reach remote servers. Marketers will now get no access to keyword recognition for mobile advertising. However, the language packs will take up space on the device and demand some crazy processing power. 

iCloud Plus and Private Relay

iCloud keeps users’ important documents and information secure. Now with iCloud+ and all-new subscription plans, the feature and storage plans have been updated.

The Hide My Email feature allows users to create random email addresses that enable users to send emails without exposing their original IDs. This makes sharing of data and information a lot more secure than ever. The Hide My Email feature is available for Mail, Safari and iCloud Settings.

The new privacy update also makes browsing secure by hiding email and disabling pixels and cookies from being installed in the device. The iCloud Private Relay encrypts a user’s data and masks the IP address alongside the DNS requests. This is done while you use Safari, keeping your web activity anonymous, private and secure.

Two-factor Authentication Code Generator

iOS 15 is making things way for easy for Apple users. The iOS 15 will now generate on-time passcodes for websites, applications and services that require two-factor authentication.

Lately, users access websites, apps and services after verifying their access with codes that are available on their phones. But with this feature rolling out, no third-party source will be required for authentication. Which means no typing and no hassle.

App Privacy Report

The app privacy report provides insights on what data is tracked and consumed by third parties during the last 7 days. The report shares the status of where your device shares data and how. In this report, one can easily opt-in and opt-out of data sharing at their fingertips. A user can access all the recently contacted domains in a single window.

How does iOS 15 Privacy Update impact mobile advertising?

The iOS 15 update motivates the mobile app publishers and advertisers to go organic. Mobile app monetization platforms and ad networks now need to think up strategies that make their work effective. Marketers need to streamline their practices around zero-party data to enable ad serving that is relevant to users. For doing so, advertisers can run quizzes and polls to understand their audience in the absence of identifiers.

For email marketers, they need to manage their email lists and share accurate data to be able to market well. Similarly, they need to segregate the type of emails they float, so that emails reach relevant users in case they opt for categories e.g. informational, promotional etc. Besides all odds, there is still hope for mobile advertisers and publishers to grow revenue with in-app ads and marketing. The reason is lesser opt-ins and frequent opt-outs.   

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