Android overtakes iOS on mobile ad traffic

Android overtakes iOS on mobile ad traffic

Summary: Android devices now account for more ad impressions than iOS devices, even if those ads don't create as much money.

TOPICS: Mobility, Apple, CXO, Samsung

Android has hit another milestone — devices running the operating system are now getting more mobile advertising that those running iOS.

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According to mobile advertising company Opera Mediaworks, just under 43 percent of all mobile ads for the first quarter of this year were delivered to Android devices, compared to 38 percent of ads which were sent to iOS devices.

And while iOS devices still generate 52 percent of the total revenue compared with 33 percent for Android, Android is catching up. "Although still trailing iOS in terms of monetization, Android is making slow advancement in that category, as well," the report said, noting that in the same quarter last year Android accounted for 27 percent of revenue. Most of Android's gain has been at the expense of BlackBerry and Symbian devices.

Opera Mediaworks said Samsung was the "clear leader" in the Android market, accounting for more that 60 percent of ad impressions on Android (LG is a distant second on 11 percent).

Phones are the targets for the majority of ad impressions for both Android and iOS. Of Android's 43 percent of the market, 41 percent is ads on phones, and only 1.5 percent on tablets. Of the 38 percent of mobile ad traffic that ends up on iOS devices, 25 percent goes to iPhones, 10 percent to iPads, and three percent to iPod Touch devices.

While — unsurprisingly — the colossal scale of social networks mean they account for the most mobile ad traffic volume, arts and entertainment sites are the top revenue generators. Business, finance and investing content has the highest revenue per impression, holding that top position for more than a year now.

The US continues to drive the majority of ad traffic (just over half) and revenue on the Opera Mediaworks' platform but Asia is now in a solid second place, having overtaken Europe as the second largest mobile ad market in the past quarter.

Further reading

Topics: Mobility, Apple, CXO, Samsung

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  • "Of Android's 43% of the market...only 1.5 percent [sic] on tablets."

    That's awful news for Google and Android tablet makers. Especially if you believe tablet sales are, in any way, indicative of a move away from PCs. Non-mobile ads are Google's bread-and-butter, and they've struggled in mobile (especially vis a vis Facebook). If they're only getting 1.5 of ads and those ads are less lucrative in general, that does not bode well.
    • You missed one small detail

      That is not the share Google has on advertising on tablets, that's the share that android has with tablets. Google is facing a tough competition from Facebook, but they have by far the biggest chunk of the mobile advertising market.
      And you can see it from another point of view - like android smartphones that are just overtaking iOS smartphones, imagine the potential there are with android for the future.

      Mobile is a tough matter for Google indeed, in part because people are spending most of the time in apps and it's harder for Google to control what's going on there - but I don't pity them or facebook.
      • Android Users Are Cheap

        The reason that the Android platform sees more ad traffic than iOS is simply because iPhone users are more likely to pay for the ad-free versions of apps, just like they're willing to pay more for the iPhone itself.
        • You are right

          Android users are in average cheaper. But your next argument is against the numbers - if iPhone users are buying ad-free versions of apps, why are they generating a lot more ad clicks?! Note that android is generating a bit more ad traffic for a much bigger market share.

          But yes in the end it's all because android users are indeed cheaper.
          • And cheaper is where the money is

            The cheaper end of the market exists simply because there are so many budget to mid range Android devices aimed at people who are not necessarily "cheap", but rather are not willing to pay the price of premium devices. The budget to mid range is a huge demographic and still growing by the day as the last remaining feature phone users slowly switch over in emerging nations. Also, as stated in the article much of the data is US centric; Asia (and Africa) remain a big opportunity for budget to mid range Android platforms.
          • Frugal, Not Cheap

            Frugal is likely a better description.
        • Garbage

          Most iphone users are cheap and are on stupid carrier subsidy plans.
          How many iphone users actually pay for the phone in full?
          Some of the top end Android phones are simply not available on any subsidies and can only be bought outright. These are bought by the money-no-object types not the check-it-out-i-got-an-iphone-on-a-plan type.
    • Android tablet usage numbers

      I don't know about other Android users, but most Android users I know have their favourite web browser's user agent set as desktop on their tablets. Hardly any android tablet actually have the browser UA as Android Tablet.
  • I suppose the same will happen with tablets

    It will take a while, but I doubt iPad can maintain current sales in the next quarters, for sure not the market share. Share start bleeding, then sales number, they will become a steady 2nd runner far from android.... maybe just wild guessing here.
  • Troubled waters for Google?

    Since Google is really advertising company, not a tech company like Apple, you figure the numbers to mobile would but much higher. Marketshare is a meaningless number unless its coupled with high revenues which isn't happening. Google ad market continues to slide, I think it was 9% last quarter and it will probably repeat the same slide next quarter. Its time for Google to get its act together, the competition is eating away at your profit center.
    Bob Trikakis
    • Google IS a tech company

      To say Google is still an ad company is like saying Amazon is still a book store. In fact, Google is an infrastructure company as well these days, just as much as Amazon is.
      • They are more drivin by Ad's then Tech

        the problem is their Tech is - just OK.... but you get what you "pay" for.
      • Google is a search company, which it uses for advertising, and advertising

        is really most of what Google does. I remember reading, a while ago, that about 90% of its revenue came from advertising (I don't know the real current figure). Nevertheless, most of Google's revenue comes from advertising. It's trying to diversify, via acquisitions of anything that even remotely smells of high tech, but that high tech won't be productive for many years, so, that still leaves what is basically, and advertising company.
    • Google is a tech company

      That makes money (almost all of it) from advertising.
      Shift to mobile can be disruptive, while Google dominance with android could be a very good sign for them, it's not straightforward.
      Yes there are risks, but also opportunities, Google is not dependent from android - they still make more money with other platform - but probably about to change.
      9% decrease in average ad price, Google increased in "ad clicks" was enough to compensate that.
      Not long ago I said here, that Google challenge was in apps advertising - that can be out of their control, and in mobile, users spend a lot of time in apps. Obviously those 9% are also troublesome. People at Google are obviously aware of that and some changes are coming - news from yesterday:

      Curiously it seems that Google is not afraid of mobile, even if competition there is probably stronger.

      I wouldn't place Google in trouble waters, but one thing is for sure, if they fall, others will rise.
  • apples and oranges

    I believe that the author does not really understands the ad business. This sentence "And while iOS devices still generate 52 percent of the total revenue compared with 33 percent for Android, Android is catching up." is misinterpretation of the significance of the ads' success on the Android platform. The ads on TV, radio, internet are there to build the brand of the product they advertise. The companies that advertise do not care if the users click on the links or not. It is sufficient for them to know that the users see their company name. To a certain degree, the more the user sees a particular company name, the "better" and possibly even "more reliable" this brand would be perceived by the user/customer. For obvious reasons, the number and the composition of the users/customers is much more important then the total revenue of iOS vs Android.
    • Reality is that, most internet advertising goes unnoticed and ignored,

      and when anyone notices an ad, they soon forget what they saw or which company the ad was from. People have very short memories, and the tiny smartphone and tablets screens, don't provide for large enough ads for people to notice.

      I have smartphones and tablets at home, and I can't remember the last ad on any of those devices which I cared about, and in fact, I hardly even noticed them. PC screens have more room to advertise, and they can be "in-your-face" a lot more, but, I still ignore them, and I forget what they were about after a few seconds or minutes.

      The one type of advertising which I do notice more, is the type that occupies a complete sector of the screen, and I notice it more because it irritates me that a large portion of the screen is being "wasted" where I would prefer more meaningful content. Microsoft uses a lot of the screen on the right side of their e-mail service, and it's the type that I notice more. Though I still hate it, I've found myself clicking on some of the advertising; but for the most part, it goes ignored.
      • 3/4 of your post is about your experience!

        Most of it is filled with irrelevance and obvious common sense, again you missed the point and added not much to the discussion.
        First, your experience is not the world behavior trend setter - taking your personal case to justify a worldwide phenomenon is in my opinion wrong - nothing against your opinion - but you are just one among billions.

        Obviously people just look at ads from time to time, nobody is expecting that users will click in 50% of ad links, not even 10 or 1%. The thing about advertising is that among billions a tiny percentage still makes a huge thing - Google is serving more than 3 billions video ads a month, AOL even more - just in the US - and the world is 20 times bigger, even world economy is about 5 times bigger (knowing that the US are way way out of proportion in the matter).

        Obviously when advertising occupies bigger area will be more noticed - duh! That's obvious! But as you said, it's not good to annoy viewers and make then look elsewhere - well observed ;).

        Most don't like advertising (I must confess than ads are too many times the best of TV:) ), but for even more it's even worse to pay for things we are used to get for nothing - the ratio between paid apps and the equivalent free with ads is a good sign of that (
  • Mobile Commerce & Mobile Advertising

    By 2015, over 750 million users will either have a ticket delivered to their mobile phone or buy a ticket with their phone, compared to 230 million today. Ticket delivery will be by SMS, bar codes, mobile web, smartphone apps or NFC.

    Mobile retail will exceed US$12 billion by 2014 (mobile retail is defined as m-coupon redemption values, smart poster fees and advertising expenditure). There certainly is much more to the story!
    • That's a good example

      The shift to mobile can be a challenge, but globally, there will be more opportunities. If the same players will be in charge is unknown, but for consumers is irrelevant - good luck to the best ones.