App Tracking Transparency is decreasing ad revenue by as much as 20%

Ios 14.5 App Tracking Transparency Hero
Ios 14.5 App Tracking Transparency Hero (Image credit: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple's App Tracking Transparency is starting to have an affect on the advertising industry.
  • As more users update to iOS 14.6, more are turning off app tracking.
  • That is impacting advertising revenue by as much as 20%, according to Brian Bowman.

Brian Bowman really hates Apple's App Tracking Transparency.

The CEO of Consumer Acquisition, a social ad agency, sat down recently for an interview with Gamesbeat (part of Venture Beat) that touched on the effects that Apple's new App Tracking Transparency feature was having on the advertising industry. When Gamesbeat asked Bowman what life after Apple's IDFA changes is like so far, the CEO said that some clients are seeing revenue being impacted as much as 40%.

"Well, we're not post-IDFA yet. We're still in transition. It's what I expected. There's a loss of a portion of revenue, depending on how people are evolving. I don't expect the full impact to be felt until the end of July. The rollout of 14.6 has been slow. It's obviously picking up. Apple intentionally delayed app tracking transparency until 14.6. Certain clients are down 30% to 40% percent in revenue. Others are feeling less of an impact. It's a mess."

Bowman had even stronger words when asked about Apple's stance that its new anti-tracking measures were a step forward for user privacy, calling it "absurd."

"If people actually cared about privacy, then anything tied to Edward Snowden would have been a big deal. The government reading my emails and listening to my phone calls. People look at it like this. I'm not doing anything inappropriate. I'm a normal person. I don't care. The whole question is upside down. It's not a question of privacy. It's a question of personalization. Apple has done a phenomenal job of PR. They don't offer privacy. What they're doing is centralizing and curating data. You have to use their app store. You have to use their payment gateway. They understand your voice, your fingerprint, and your health data. They understand the way you purchase. That's not privacy. Apple is defining privacy by saying they get all the data and therefore it's private. It's absurd."

While it's not surprising to hear an advertising excecutive lambast Apple for hurting an advertising method, the simple fact is that advertising companies enjoyed the luxury of collection plenty of user data without people's knowledge for years.

However "absurd" it may be, App Tracking Transparency is a great step forward for user privacy and a win for Apple's continued efforts in the area. It gives each and every user a choice on what they want to do with their data.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.