John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Android Edges Ahead of iOS in Ad Impressions

Another metric with which to measure the Android/iOS horse race.

Online advertising network Chitika recently took a look at holiday ad impressions and noted an interesting reversal. In November, Apple’s iOS mobile operating system dominated its network, generating 51.7 percent of the ad traffic on it to Android’s 46.1 percent.

And in December, the two OSes traded places. Android ascended to the lead, claiming a 51.6 percent share of Chitika’s traffic, while iOS slipped to 46.5 percent.

That’s a noteworthy reversal, one likely driven by the bevy of Android handsets gifted over the holidays. As Android chief Andy Rubin claimed in a Dec. 28 tweet, some 3.7 million Android devices were activated over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

But presumably there were quite a few iPhones given over the holidays, as well. So how is it that Android managed to unseat iOS?

Chitika chalks it up to Android’s openness, which enables a broad presence on a growing number of mobile devices made by a wide variety of manufacturers. That certainly makes sense. But there’s another factor to consider here, as well.

Chitika’s metrics are based on ad impressions. And Android offers significantly more free apps than does iOS. Many are ad-supported. In fact, according to Distimo roughly two-thirds of the apps in the Android Market are available for free. Could it be that Chitika is seeing more Android-related ad traffic on its network simply because Android has more ad-supported apps?


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work