Audience Network: Facebook will soon be exclusively using in-app bidding for ads on iOS

From Q2 2021, Facebook will only allow in-app bidding for ads that are booked via the Audience Network for iOS. The company is reacting to Apple’s IDFA changes and is discontinuing support for waterfall buying.

From spring 2021, ads in iOS apps can only be bought via direct bidding in the app via the Audience Network Facebooks. At the beginning of the second quarter of next year, the waterfall principle as a buying method for ads in the iOS context will also be suspended. Allison Schiff reports on this at AdExchanger and points out that these updates are a direct response to Apple’s planned changes to the storage of Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), which were initially postponed until early 2021.

Apple’s privacy policy accelerates Facebook’s actions

In June 2020, Apple announced that the new iOS 14 operating system, which has now been rolled out, will place new demands on marketers. For their apps and linked third-party services in the App Store, developers have to specify which data they are tracking and how. In addition, the user’s consent must be actively obtained in order to be able to access the advertising ID at all. As a result of this announcement, Facebook publicly complained about a possible collapse in advertising income in the mobile sector. Since Apple admits that the new feature will be a great challenge for many developers, the mandatory obtaining of consent will not start until spring 2021.

As a reaction to this, Facebook’s statement can now be understood to only allow in-app bidding in the audience network for ads on iOS apps. Amit Bhojwani, Head of Partnerships in the Audience Network, told AdExchanger:

We continue to work on short- and long-term opportunities with our publishers and partners to alleviate the impact of the likely loss of IDFA.

Regardless of Apple’s regulations, Facebook states that in-app bidding leads to higher sales for marketers. According to AdExchanger, the Audience Network assumes that more than 50 percent of the marketers’ income will be generated through bidding processes before the end of the year. And not only for iOS apps, but also for Android applications, the specification for in-app bidding could apply in the future:

We have always championed the benefits of bidding over waterfall for publishers, and this is true for our publishers with iOS or Android inventory – we believe it is the best way for them to optimize their yield and benefit from operational efficiency gains. At this stage, we do not have confirmed specific dates for becoming bidding-only on Android, however, our intent is to become a bidding-only network by the end of 2021,

so Amit Bhojwani. Apple’s tracking restrictions could have an impact on the CPM when buying advertisements – but with in-app bidding, marketers are better prepared for fluctuations than with the waterfall principle, continues Bhojwani.

For more information and helpful resources on app bidding on Facebook’s Audience Network, visit Facebook’s dedicated website.

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