Apple Pushes Mobile Retargeting Capabilities on iOS 8

Tim Maytom

iad ipadApple is claiming to have solved the mobile cookie problem that prevents retargeting across mobile browsers and apps with an overlooked feature in iOS 8.

Among the tools for marketers in the new operating system is the ability to retarget ads based on users' in-app browsing behaviours, which Apple is pitching to advertising agencies as a solution to one of mobile's persistent issues.

According to Digiday, the functionality enables brands and marketers to follow users across apps and browsers, and target them with ads that would redirect them to their own apps using deep-linking. eCommerce retailers are the primary focus of the ability, as it enables them to retarget users based on items they have previously expressed an interest in, or those within digital wishlists or based on shopping history.

The capability is only available through the iAd platform, and may entice more advertisers to the platform, which only has a 2.6 per cent share of the US mobile ad market, compared to Google's 37.7 per cent, Facebook's 17.9 per cent and even Twitter's 3.5 per cent.

While its projected mobile ad revenue for all of 2014 is equivalent to only 1.3 per cent of Apple's Q3 revenue alone, the iAd network is still important to Apple. The majority of revue is shared with app publishers who use the network, and as such it serves to entice developers to keep making apps for Apple devices. The introduction of an advanced retargeting solution may lead to more agencies taking the platform more seriously.