Are iOS App Users Consenting to Tracking?

May 26, 2022

In April 2021 Apple introduced its App Tracking Transparency (ATT) framework, including a prompt asking users to allow apps to track their activity across other companies’ apps and websites. About a year in, AppsFlyer has examined the extent to which apps are showing the ATT prompt and users consenting.

As part of the research, AppsFlyer analyzed 4.9 billion non-organic iOS app installs, 4.6 thousand iOS apps that have implemented ATT with at least 100 day 7 sessions, and 3.6 thousand iOS apps with at least 5K installs attributed by SKAdNetwork per quarter.

The results indicate that the vast majority of apps have implemented the ATT prompt, with 80% of the analyzed apps showing it to users. The implementation rate does vary by category, though: it’s highest for Gaming (91%), Shopping (84%), and Food & Drink (84%) apps, while lowest for Health & Fitness (57%), Education (61%), and Finance (64%) apps.

Interestingly enough, many users are opting in. In fact, the consent rate in March (almost a year into the ATT framework) was 46%, meaning that almost 1 out of every 2 instances of a user being shown the prompt resulted in that user tapping on the “Allow” button.

There is less variance on this metric among categories, though consent rates are highest for the Utilities (53%), Finance (53%) and Photography (50%) categories and lowest for the Education (41%), Health & Fitness (42%) and Social (44%) categories. Education was also the category with the lowest IDFA presence in a previous analysis from Pubmatic.

These results are intriguing in light of another prompt: the cookie prompt. In a recent survey, YouGov found that fewer than one-third of adults in the US agree that they always click “Accept all” when they open a website and it asks them about cookies.

That could have something to do with geography, too. The AppsFlyer analysis indicates that ATT consent is 30% higher in developing countries than in developed ones. For example, though the consent rate was 46% globally in March, in the US it was 41%.

Other Findings:

  • AppsFlyer data indicates that consent is highest when shown to users launching an app for the first time.
  • App developers can boost consent rates by showing a post-ATT in-app notification to engaged users who haven’t yet consented.

See the full results here.

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