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Summary:

The stock market loves Apple (NSDQ: AAPL), and so, it seems, do consumers falling over themselves to get news about the latest iPhone. But i…

Android Eating Apples
photo: Flickr / Jan Tik

The stock market loves Apple (NSDQ: AAPL), and so, it seems, do consumers falling over themselves to get news about the latest iPhone. But it appears that Apple device usage may be a different story. Millennial Media, one of the bigger mobile ad networks, notes that ad impression growth, on its network, for iOS devices, was flat in the last month, in contrast with Android and Windows, which each went up by 48 percent.

Unusually, that puts Apple’s iOS operating system into the same category as Symbian, which also saw flat growth this month. Ad impressions measure how many times an ad gets called up through an app or another piece of mobile content on the mobile internet.

The figures, from Millennial’s August Mobile Mix report, note that Apple is still the single-most popular OEM on its network, accounting for just over 23 percent of all impressions; the iPhone is also the most popular device, with just over 13 percent of all ad impressions.

But after that, it becomes pretty much an Android story. Android device makers HTC, Samsung, Motorola (NYSE: MMI) and LG (SEO: 066570), Huawei, Kyocera and SonyEricsson (NSDQ: ERIC) taking up seven of the top-ten on the OEM list. (RIM (NSDQ: RIMM) holds out at number five, and Nokia (NYSE: NOK) ranked eighth.) In device-specific rankings, Android accounted for six of the top-ten devices:

HTC, on the heels of new product launches, has reclaimed the spot as the number-two OEM after Apple in terms of ad impressions. That slot had been occupied for the last several months by Samsung.

Android now accounts for 54 percent of all ad impressions on the Millennial network, with Apple in an increasingly trailing second position at 28 percent. Android’s dominance on Millennial’s network is a good example of how strong an OS can become when it works on multiple OEMs’ devices.

You would think that this would make the platform hugely appealing to those in the mobile advertising world looking to reach the biggest audience possible.

But interestingly, when it comes to ad spend, the two platforms are much closer than their impression shares would suggest. This month, Android accounted for 49 percent of ad spend, while iOS accounted for 41 percent of ad spend. The month before, in July, the gap was slightly smaller, with Android at 48 percent and iOS at 43 percent. A sign that Android is gradually pulling away?

The other side of the story, of course, is that together Apple and Android are still dominating over every other platform when it comes to mobile ad spend on the network.

Content. Largely a matter of single place swapping if you compare consumer preferences in August 2011 compared to the same month a year ago. Games are still on top, with Heath and Fitness the only new category entering the top 10.

  1. I wonder what it’s like to be on the same plateau as Symbian…. Must be pretty desolate. 

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  2. More paid Apps on iOS = less ads = less impressions (just an idea)

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  3. @Dirk – Yes. I think about the apps I use regularly and they are ad-free (except for a couple of free games). Note sure what this data is really showing.

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  4. Hi there-I think @8c77e568f2fb504e63931193cd8f3474:disqus  and @garyREM:disqus  are right that there are a lot of paid apps on iOS but the growth of ad impressions on the platform has been steady and growing up to now so that can’t be the reason here…  I just think that usage on the other platforms is growing a lot faster right now, and apple was the early adopter platform, perhaps slowing down now a bit..

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  5. These numbers are artificially skewed to show Android bigger as noted in past posts they do not reflect paid apps or general surfing (just look at net applications data where Anroid is still behind Apple).  Also their numbers don’t ad up as If Android had 80% of the smartphone segment they still would not get to an overall 54% as the whole smartphone segment is only that big and Android has not significant share of non smartphone connected devices.

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  6. And platform comparisons go only so far…

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  7. Of course this doesn’t show iOS usage flattening out.  It shows use of Millennial’s ad service on iOS flattening out.  Certainly not the same thing.

    If you look at other data it becomes obvious that iOS web usage is far higher than Millennial’s figures.

    ComScore’s recent Device Essentials Report shows iOS with far higher web usage than Android (53.1% vs 35.6%) in the USA and even higher in other countries (83% in Canada and Australia, 72% in Germany, 60% in the UK).  

    NetApplications similarly shows iOS 3x larger than Android and growing faster.

    StatOwl, Global Counter, W3Counter, WebMasterPro, Net Market Share, Clicky Web Analytics, AT Internet and WikiMedia all report that iOS has between 2.22% and 5.15% of global web traffic compared to Android which only has between 0.5% and 1.84%.

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  8. Perhaps there are many whom are delaying the purchase of a new iPhone (as I am)?  This could be  a signal of a slowdown in purchase by those who want to wait for the latest product.

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  9. Hello blogger more people use the iOS products to surf the net at the airports than android products, and andy rubin said the activation of androids products exceed 500,000 per whatever I wonder why are they absent at the airports.

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  10. There must be all sorts of interesting segmentations of the platforms by markets. I keep reading that Android is very popular yet I rarely see them.  I think I know two people with Android phones and zero people with Android tablets. I’ve yet to see an Android tablet outside of an advertisement. I suspect if I went to the right location I’d see a lot of Android based phones.

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