Apple forced Meta to change how it sells ads in the name of privacy — it's finally starting to work

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Following the launch of Apple's App Tracking Transparency (ATT) rules, Meta encountered more problems than most. Its ad model tracked users from one app to the next and across services. But now it's starting to get out from beneath ATT, according to a new report.

Meta-owned Facebook will reportedly lose out on around $10 billion in ad revenue this year, all thanks to ATT. So it's easy to see why it would want to find a solution. It's thought that not only has it found a way to deal with Apple's rules, but it's also starting to see the fruits of its labor.

The money's coming back

Bloomberg reports that Meta is working on the technology that's designed to help it target ads at the right people. That involves using AI to work out which users should see which ads.

"Meta is operating two' centers of excellence for AI,' one in service of the ad business and the other focused on the user experience for Facebook and Instagram, said Tom Alison, the head of the Facebook app at Meta, in an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek." But knowing who to send ads to is only half the battle.

The company has also been working to improve how it tracks the performance of ads, particularly in video. With Facebook and Instagram leaning very much into video content, selling ads against them is more important than ever.

And it's beginning to work.

"A year after Apple's changes, it appears as if some of Meta's adjustments are working," Bloomberg notes. "The share of advertising budgets going to Meta stabilized in the first and second quarters. It's now about 28%, according to Appsumer, after having fallen to 24%, from 32%, in the first six months after Apple's measures took effect."

Meta has also been running ads that push people from Facebook and Instagram to Messenger and WhatsApp, both companies under its umbrella.

None of this is helping on the front lines, though. Meta recently announced substantial job losses, with around 11,000 people leaving their roles.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.