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Adsquare’s POV on Apple’s update to iOS 14

© Apple Inc.

 

Dear Partners,

Adsquare is committed to champion an open, neutral and healthy ecosystem. Data privacy and protection have always been at the core of our doing. Apple’s update to iOS 14 didn’t strike us as a surprise; It was long expected, especially after last year’s update to iOS 13 with its new location permission settings.  

Apple is now meeting the demand of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) in specifying how user consent must be obtained. Similar measures had been taken by our data suppliers directly back in 2018. Apple’s framework will now set an even clearer direction and help app publishers to operate to highest standards. 

Data-sourcing becomes more transparent, which is positive news. Data-driven marketing will live on and progress. More than 70% of users prefer ads tailored to interests and shopping habits, not surprisingly. Furthermore, in exchange for free content and added functionalities, users will continue to share their data with the corresponding app publishers.

Adsquare is the largest aggregator of mobile audience data, spatial data and movement data globally and we will continue to offer our products that help advertisers to transparently run data-driven marketing campaigns outside of the walled gardens and measure their performances, even in real-time. Below, please find a summary of expected implications as well as measures taken by us to guarantee you business as usual. 

Best wishes

Tom Laband

(CEO & Co-Founder at Adsquare)

 

NARRATIVE

  • Apple announced the next major update to iOS 14 at the Apple Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) on June 22, rolled out in September 2020.        
  • In short, Apple is taking the IDFA advertising site out of the depths of the Settings app and making it explicitly opt-in for every single app. 
  • If an app wants to use the IDFA, iOS 14 will present mobile users with a dialog, asking to allow tracking. 
  • When the “Ask App Not To Track” button is clicked, the app will not be able to access the device’s IDFA, and receive the same value as if the “Limit Ad Tracking” mechanism is turned on. Until a user grants authorization, all identifiers will be zeroed out.
  • App developers will have to provide information on tracked and shared user data on the respective app sites in the Apple App Store (similar to what is already displayed on app level sites in the Android Play Store).
  • Apple also announced “Approximate Location” controls, a system that allows users to control what level of granularity will be shared in terms of location data.

 

IMPLICATIONS TO ADSQUARE AND MOBILE MARKETING

  • The way we reach users and measure performance on mobile devices or connect data for those that rely on IDFA will be impacted but will continue to exist. 
  • Our ID inventory that is used for our targeting and measurement products consists of two thirds of Android Advertising IDs (AAID) and one third on Apple’s Identifiers for Advertising (IDFA).
  • We are expecting a low to medium decrease in IDFA records per app publisher, but it will mostly be overshadowed by new data partnerships keeping overall inventory stable.
  • This update to iOS 14 means more transparency and consequently privacy for consumers.
  • This move compares to measures that our data partners had implemented directly in their apps from May 2018 onwards. 

 

OUR MEASURES & OUTLOOK 

  • For the background location data applied in Adsquare’s measurement products and place visit calculation for the targeting use case, our suppliers have really been going after apps that have an always on location use-case and similarly IOS-13 mandated explicit consent already so this is going to be a modification of our partners’ consent screens with a device ID dialog box. The text of these dialogue boxes can be customised by app publishers to best fit their needs.  
  • If the publisher can make a case for granular location data, the available inventory should not decrease significantly, e.g. transportation apps, weather apps, restaurant booking.  
  • We live in the age of ‘big data’ and we are constantly told that huge volumes of data are required for the best insights. But when it comes to understanding the effectiveness of your drive-to-store campaigns and optimising your approach, this patently isn’t the case. By putting in place a focused methodology that prioritises accuracy over volume you can reveal all the insights you need. 
  • If there will be a drop in inventory on IDFA, app publishers would likely need to shift to encouraging users to share data in another form, such as through a login.
  • Our data supply team is continuously signing new data partnerships to guarantee scale for audience and location segments connected to MAIDs.
  • Our data partners continuously expand their network simultaneously.
  • We didn’t see a big drop in records under management with the iOS 13 location dialogue box “share location only when using the app” and expect the effects to be comparable.
  • A lot of information and automatically tracked data are hidden in data protection declarations, which probably hardly anyone reads. The clear preparation is therefore only one step towards more transparency, without further direct effects for mobile marketers.

 

 

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About Christoph

ChristophChristoph is VP Marketing and based in Adsquare's head office in Berlin. He has a weakness for print ads and also reads the small print on product packaging. Chris acts as an unsalaried Brand Ambassador for Lufthansa and is also a bad drummer.

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