It’s been a long time coming. Back in June last year, we first heard about the ‘scary’ prospect of the 14th official iOS update that would require permission from users to collect and share data using Apple’s device identifier. So… is it as bad as it seems?

What is iOS 14?

iOS 14 is the latest release of Apple’s operating system; the operating system that’s used across iPhones and the iPod Touch. It was first launched back in September last year with features such as redesigned widgets and a new app library, but the latest update has introduced new privacy settings under Apple’s App Tracking Transparency policy.

In a bid to provide users with greater control over how their own personal data is collected, stored, and utilised, apps available through the App Store will now need to present users with a prompt message that requests explicit permission for data collection, even if permission had already been granted prior to the iOS update.

Impact for Advertisers

What this means is that if you advertise through any platform such as Facebook or Google that’s accessed through the App Store app – or through platforms that use Facebook or Google login systems – you may not be able to target audiences with the same level of accuracy and intent due to a potential lack of user-provided data.

However, the important thing to note here is that, with the update having only just been rolled out, the opt-out rate is currently unknown. Advertisers may find that, for the most part, there is very little change due to the majority of users choosing to share their data as normal. But it’s important to be prepared. And Google is anticipating a ‘reduced visibility into key metrics that show how ads drive conversions, affecting how advertisers value and bid on impressions’ as a direct result of users opting out of data sharing.

What advertisers are likely to be faced with is smaller retargeting pools, and imitations in the ability to personalise ads to specific audiences, and track campaign performance.

Is it Time to Worry?

No! The big advertising platforms are already working to identify solutions and implement strategic workarounds that will minimise the impact on advertisers. Facebook has launched its Aggregated Event Measurement tool that can help advertisers to better track campaign performance in line with user data preferences, while Google has reported that it is working closely with Apple to introduce effective changes to the SKAdNetwork that will better support advertisers tracking efforts.

The iOS 14 privacy updates aren’t as scary as they appeared on the surface. At Adrac, we’re confident that through the use of creativity, strategic planning, and selective optimisation, advertisers can continue reaching the right people, at the right time. If you need more help with this, please contact us.

Author Rebecca

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