Incipia blog

What Does Apple’s Limit Ad Tracking Mean for App Marketers?

Gabe Kwakyi | September 19, 2016

Feature Image Credit: Apple.com

While many of the iOS 10 updates pertain to expanding developer capabilities and improving the experience for users, one of the changes Apple is including with iOS 10 will likely have a significant, negative impact on app marketers.

In iOS 10, Apple will allow users to activate "limit ad tracking" mode, wherein an ID required to track and attribute installs (IDFA - Identifier for Advertising) will be blocked from showing to advertisers.

Adjust, a popular Mobile Measurement Partner pegs the percentage of users with limit ad tracking on to be around 13%.

Thankfully, Adjust has a backup system called "fingerprinting," which can help continue attributing app install campaigns that allow the advertiser to direct users to a URL in order to install an app. Yet fingerprinting require users to be directed to an intermediary, Adjust tracker URL before moving on to the app store to install the app (Adjust fingerprints the app first when a user's device opens the tracker URL and again once the app is installed and Adjust's SDK is activated on that device).

However, several main app install platforms do not support fingerprinting, listed below:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Adwords, including Youtube
  • DoubleClick
  • Video and retargeting networks that rely on IDFA to send server-to-server clicks.

In these cases, advertisers will not be able to attribute installs or revenue back to a marketing or advertising platform, making it difficult to run and track simultaneous marketings campaigns.

Apple's move to limit visibility for advertisers may come partially from the good place of its commitment to privacy for users, but is also likely driven by an ulterior motive to reduce the usage of advertising, as Apple works on a privacy-compliant way of providing post-install attribution data.

The Bottom Line: 13% of iOS users may no longer be able to be tracked through 3rd party SDKs, disrupting advertisers' ability to track revenue and other post-install metrics.

Original Source: Adjust Email Update, 9/7/16