There was quite of buzz a couple of weeks ago when the inevitable was announced by Apple that, in layman’s terms, they were going to start kicking out apps that included UDID tracking from the Apple App store.
Most advertisers using tracking through ad networks were using UDID pass -backs to allow them to track the number of downloads they were getting from their display activity. This meant that they were sailing close to the wind due to the privacy laws In the US. Don’t get me wrong, nobody was breaking the law (at the time) but Apple was getting a lot of pressure from the authorities and decided to do something about it before it became an issue.
For the time being, apps that had UDID tracking before the Apple change of heart are still on the store (as of the posting of this blog) and some apps are still getting approved with integrated UDID tracking however most new apps are not getting through with the tracking included. The implications are as follows:
- Some Advertisers and agencies will go back to the dark ages of not being able to track their downloads
- Or they have to find a non UDID solution – more about that later 😉
- There will be an increased demand for the Apple ad solution, iAd that will be able to provide analytics via the app store. Incidentally iAd hasn’t been that successful since launch probably down to very high minimum investment levels and high impression/click costs. Smart move from Apple, eh?
So the best solution for most is No2, a non-UDID method. There are a few out there and I anticipate that there will be potentially more over the coming year. We believe that the better solutions are the ones utilising the cookie style tracking via safari on the phone and ours incorporates this.
The Yodel tracking tool (YSDK) allows full visibility of where an app download or click came from. It can be used to optimize subsequent marketing activity and really importantly it can track events within apps such as sign ups, subscriptions, sections visited and purchases.
More in part 2 (once I’ve written it)….