Android overtakes iOS as top platform for mobile advertisers

James is editor in chief of TechForge Media, with a passion for how technologies influence business and several Mobile World Congress events under his belt. James has interviewed a variety of leading figures in his career, from former Mafia boss Michael Franzese, to Steve Wozniak, and Jean Michel Jarre. James can be found tweeting at @James_T_Bourne.

Research from advertising network Adfonic has found that, globally, Android devices are consistently hitting more ad impressions than iOS.

As part of its Global AdMetrics Report for the second quarter of this year, Android increased its share of global ad impressions from 38% to 46% in quarter 2 whilst iOS dropped from 45% to 34%.

Android continued its dominance of the North American advertising marketplace, with a whopping 63% of impressions accounted for on Android – up 17% on quarter 1. iOS in comparison trailed on 30%.

According to the report, the only area where iOS hasn’t ceded market lead to Android is South America.

Adfonic CMO Paul Childs, who recently wrote a piece on tips for mobile advertisers for DeveloperTech, said of the findings: “The growing dominance of Android among Adfonic’s global advertising marketplace reflects wider industry trends that we are seeing from other sources.

“Together, Android and iOS devices now account for 80% of Adfonic’s global ad inventory. This is largely because their smartphones and tablets have the most compelling user interfaces, comprising touch screens, geolocation features and attractive displays”, he concluded.

It would be a misnomer to say that this two horse race is over. But it’s clear to see that the two rivals lead the way in generating ad impressions.

The idea that Android was starting to overtake iOS was mooted as far back as January, when a report from analytics agency Chitika noted holiday ad impressions and a significant role reversal between November and December last year.

According to Chitika’s research, Android lagged 5% behind iOS in November, but swung it back to hold 51.6% of ad impressions by the end of December compared to iOS’s 46.5%.

This upturn was put down to Android’s more open network – however, it could be argued that more Android ads are tracked because many more Android apps are free and ad-supported.

Similarly, a recent report from Millennial Media showed the number of ad impressions generated by device, with 14 of the top 20 mobiles for ad impressions running Android.

So Adfonic’s research indicates a prevalent trend. Is Android’s recent surge a sign of the future? Is this worrying news for iOS?

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