Android Finally Ousts iOS In Mobile Ad Dominance War

by CXOtoday News Desk    May 12, 2015

operating system

Android has finally overthrown iOS to grab the number one mobile operating platform, both in terms of ad revenue and traffic. The report published by Opera Mediaworks notes that while traditionally iOS had seen higher mobile ad revenues than Android, this trend saw a reversal in the last quarter – and for the first time.

Power to Android

Albeit the margins are very less and some point out that Opera’s figures are based on impressions served and revenue generated on its own mobile advertising platform, where Android managed to generate 45.8 percent ad revenue and iOS was at 45.4. Nevertheless, the competition is tough out there with Android gaining in terms of mobile ad impressions or traffic in Q1 2015.

The report says: “For the first time since we started The State of Mobile Advertising report in 2012, Android is leading revenue generation across our platform, albeit by only a fraction of a percentage point.”

On the whole however, the wheel turned in Android’s favour. As per Opera’s figures for the first quarter of 2015, Android had a 65.17 percent global share of mobile ad traffic, while iOS had a 22.34 percent share. In terms of ad revenue however, Android had a 45.77 percent share of the market, while iOS had a 45.44 percent share.

BlackBerry, Symbian, and Windows Phone accounted for 1.87 percent, 3.99 percent, and 0.16 percent of the global mobile ad traffic share respectively, and 1.96 percent, 1.27 percent, and 0.09 percent of the global mobile ad revenue share, respectively. Other platforms made up for the remaining 6.46 percent share of mobile ad impressions, and 5.48 percent of the global mobile ad revenue share.

Where iOS leads

As with video and other rich media ads, iOS continues to lead according to Opera’s figures, generating 56.57 percent of the video ad impressions and 62.69 percent of the video ad revenue generated in the period, while Android registered 42.84 percent of the video ad impressions, and 36.23 percent of the video ad revenue generated. The video ad completion rate for iOS was also significantly higher than Android, with 87.2 percent compared 76.7 percent.

The report also noted that in terms of monetization potential, or, the ratio of share of revenue to share of impressions served, and iOS in Q1 2015 still lead all device platforms. More importantly, the iPad was once again ahead of other device platforms in terms of monetization potential, with a ratio of 4.38:1 compared to 1.21:1 for Android tablets. The iPhone also beat out Android phones, with a ratio of 1.59:1 compared to 0.68:1.

“The iPad generates the highest revenue per impression of any device / platform combination; in fact, its monetization share in Q1 was over 4X that of its traffic volume. Android tablets are making headway, too, as revenue increased this quarter now to be just over par with their traffic volume.”


As for Android tablets to continue this trend over the coming months, the report is optimistic. It’s important to note that iOS devices reach higher monetisation levels, primarily because those devices have a larger market share in regions where advertising rates are higher, such as Western Europe and the United States, it says.