Apple iOS v Android: Developers are asking, “Show me the money”!

Published on GoMo News, November 30

In a recent article that quoted research by Piper Jaffray, it said Android developers are getting just 7% of the revenue that Apple iOS developers are getting. The article’s premise was that developers will obviously go where the money is, so therefore, Android will continue to struggle from a development perspective. This got me really thinking … could this be right? Then who are all the developers on our network?

It really is amazing what you can do with statistics.

Firstly, this statistic is relating to revenue earned from the sale of apps – not including ad revenue. Secondly, it is using revenue numbers from the life of the App Store which has obviously been around a lot longer and is much further up the hockey stick growth than Android.

Some more stats to confuse the issue.

According to research by inneractive, click-through-rates (CTR) are more than double on iOS, but eCPM are only 30% higher. This would indicate that Android developers are getting more bang for each click. Now combine this with another recent statistic that Android generates twice the ad impressions of iOS and you have Android earning more in real $ terms from Ad revenue.

“Lies, damned lies, and statistics.”

So, perhaps a more considered approach is required.

Apple has built a closed ecosystem. They heavily regulate the app store and do not look favourably on revenue generated outside of this environment. Ad revenue is the major hole in their “atmosphere”. They cannot, for obvious reasons, close the hole. They have tried to be part of the leakage through iAds. Given their current mindset, it is in their interest to control this outflow from their incredibly full bucket.

On the other side you have Android. Open source, open environment, open market. Added to the mix is that Google, the developers of the Android platform, are an Advertising company. Wouldn’t it be in their interest to ensure the ad revenue floodgates open as wide as possible?

The last piece in this puzzle is to look at monetization trends. Almost 90% of all apps that are downloaded are free and involve no in-app monetization. In fact, according to Distimo, growth in the top paid apps for the 12 months to July was only 7% compared to 34% for the top free apps. Apple’s recorded revenue comes from a slowing trend for paid apps, while 72% of their revenue is from the 4% of apps with in-app purchase models (nb. in-app purchases where only introduced to Android Market in March).

While Apple continues to limit revenue outside of their eco-system, the continuing proliferation of smartphones (at increasingly lower prices) and therefore the increasing number of app users who will not pay for that usage, means that Apple apps will be forgoing a growing monetization segment. In contrast, Android’s open environment, and the ability for developers to utilise premium ad methods may mean that Android developers are in fact following the money!

Posted in CEO

Ready to move beyond Apple?

Is iPhone a technology that’s past is use-by date? Or perhaps they have just blown their opportunities to market in recent months? These are big statements and maybe controversial but should be put on the record.

Why?

I have read many times that iPhone is the phone that desired by most consumers yet every time I read the statistics I become further convinced that life for Apple is just getting harder and that the mobile explosion that’s underway is already way bigger than iPhone.

Lets looks at some facts,

  • In most countries you can get an android phone or iphone on a plan at about the same price, so price is not a factor and most carriers can offer both devices.
  • Month on month browsing trends show Android’s market share of global mobile web stats are growing. From 11% a year ago to 22% now, where iPhone has been nominally steady in the 17-19% band.
  • The Samsung Galaxy S2 is making big dents into the desirability preferences (47% for Samsung Galaxy S2 vs 23% for iphone) of new user mindsets directly taking market share from Apple.

Where are Apple’s new users?

Have they stopped listening to the marketing overtures from Apple? We all know that the iPhone 5 is imminent, yet where is the real excitement for their latest phone product.

With current iPhone’s at hardware version 4/ OS version 5, there is little hardware wise that will not already be anticipated by competitors – more and better of the same. What’s worse, it’s now possible to reasonably claim that the iPhone product is becoming too common-place. Desire-ability is an ephemeral thing but driven by the lust for the new and the status it conveys. Owning an iPhone doesn’t bring the social status it once did and in some ways its almost a commodity item.

At the same time Android is building a huge buzz. The carriers are delighted to have many models to entice users and budgets. Android support by carriers for prepaid options are helping to reach other areas on the consumer spectrum that Apple isn’t. Meanwhile, Google’s have purchased Motorola Mobility, Microsoft’s new partnership with Nokia has pushed Windows7 phones clear to #3, and the industry is alive with media for all things non Apple.

Perhaps Apple have simply moved on and are now focused on the iPad. Here is a virgin market with few competitors, strong opportunity for growth and a desire-ability that’s allowed Apple to delay the next product version. Ahh … to have that luxury!

As for phones? iPhone 5 will have to be out of this world to reverse these trends.

Watch this space, either way it will be amazing.

 

Posted in CEO

Black Friday Givaway – A Huge Success

What a great weekend. US retail sales up 16% from last year. Cyber Black Friday up 26% and Cyber Monday reached almost $1.2b in sales.

But most significantly, we had an incredible response to our Black Friday giveaway that helped us break records across our network.

Unfortunately, the campaign is over, but it is not too late to join the network. We still have the highest eCPMs across a huge array of premium ad types so join today.

We are giving away $1,000,000 for Black Friday!

We are giving away a massive $1,000,000 to promote the use of mobile applications and further the cause of mobile advertising.

Timed with the biggest shopping day in the US, the Thanksgiving weekend has traditionally been one of the biggest days for online retailers. Referred to as “Black Friday”, digital advertisers have latched onto the shopping trend to increase their online revenues. Leadbolt are offering a way of extending this to mobile.

We know that millions of consumers will be trawling the digital world for deals from suitcases to computer games and apps. We wanted to give a kick-start to thousands of advertisers who have not yet tried promoting their products in the mobile space, as well as to mobile application developers looking to make more from their applications on iPhone and Android platforms by giving them a share of the $1,000,000 to use and prove how easy and effective the Leadbolt mobile platform can be. The Leadbolt platform allows advertisers to reach a huge mobile audience both locally and internationally to promote any kind of product and is for example a perfect way for daily deal sites including the likes of Groupon and LivingSocial to reach yet more consumers looking for a deal on the go.

With the rapid growth of the smartphone market, many shoppers will be using the convenience of their phones to do their shopping. This year, smartphone sales surpassed that of PCs and the $38 Billion industry is expected to surpass $58 Billion by 2014.

As a result, mobile advertising is becoming a key component of today’s marketing strategy. Research has shown that its rapid adoption is in part due to the increased effectiveness of this medium over traditional online advertising with response rates 5 – 10 times higher. We are offering all new mobile Advertisers and Publishers that sign up by the end of Black Friday a share in the one million dollars.

We are always trying to find exciting ways to help people make more money. We want to promote the ease at which people can enter the mobile space with little or no experience. This has never done before and it has everyone buzzing.

To take advantage of LeadBolt’s Black Friday offer, simply visit http://www.leadboltapps.com/blackfriday

Launch of Innovative New Visitor Match Tracking Feature for Advertisers

We recently launched our latest innovative new feature for advertisers on our mobile ad network, the new Visitor Match tracking function, which provides a method for the tracking of mobile conversions quickly, conveniently and automatically. The new Visitor Match feature is designed to work across a broad spectrum of platforms including the popular Android and iTunes application stores, allowing our advertisers to enjoy highly accurate tracking reports on conversion rates and match them directly to the campaign that prompted the click-thru.

The advertiser can select from three different tracking methods. The first, ClickID matching, is the default and assigns a specific identification code to the original campaign. When end users click through to view the advertisement, the tracking algorithm identifies the ClickID associated with the original campaign and forwards this information on to the advertiser, ensuring that accurate data is available to determine the future course of advertising campaigns with LeadBolt.

Advertisers can also track traffic through the Visitor Match feature by using the proprietary visitor matching feature itself. This innovative new function identifies the source of the traffic by matching platforms, devices and a range of other information to match up the conversion with the original ad impression. Advertisers can also apply the device matching controls to achieve superior matching results across the range of supported devices and operating systems.

Visitor matching is becoming increasingly important as the mobile ad community wrestles with problems of restrictive marketplaces, a general reluctance to use more SDK’s and the desire for near-perfect accuracy in install tracking. Our new visitor matching algorithms lead the way. The Visitor Match algorithms produce an impressive 98.7% accuracy rate for the server-side and other conversion pixel events as a result of their combined technologies.

With the release of this Visitor Match feature to our advertisers, we have again demonstrated our commitment to providing the best possible customer experience and most innovative high performance mobile advertising platform available today.

Adobe, Native vs HTML5, and the effect on advertising

 

 

 

 

 

With Adobe abandoning Flash for mobile and committing itself to HTML5, we spent some time wondering about the future for native apps and what this means for the mobile advertising market.

For starters, there are some pundits that are singing the HTML praise very loudly. Google and Yahoo are such two. After all, it is easier to develop in, less expensive and the major benefit is that it is cross platform – so develop once for all mobile platforms. Some believers say that by 2013 we will be wondering why we ever bothered with native apps.

However, HTML5 is still considered a little “clunky” (as one would expect for a relatively new protocol – but sure to be ironed out in the next few years), but the major concern is that it cannot tap into the native functionality of the devices it operates on, such as, notifications etc.

So in the short term, Native Apps will still be the preference of developers wanting to take full advantage of the platform they are developing for. However, we are already seeing companies choosing HTML5 as their preferred platform and it is especially relevant for smaller development companies that may not have the resources to develop on multiple platforms. As HTML5 develops further (even WC3 – the group charged with creating HTML5 – says that HTML5 won’t be fully complete until 2014) more and more develops will choose it for its ease and practicality.

So what does this mean for monetizing your assets? Well, HTML5 apps do not need to be sold through any app store so more profit in developers pockets for paid apps. However, on the flip side, right now most users will only search the app store so you are potentially losing a very strong marketing channel but not going through the app store (assuming you can be found in the first place – see our article on increasing your organic downloads)

As far as advertising revenue – since HTML5 is a web based platform, integrating an ad serving platform can be very simple. However, premium ad types, such as our Notification ads, which earn ECPMs of $20+, are not available on apps developed in HTML5 as these rely on the native environment to make these ads highly effective.

There is no doubt that the future of HTML5 is very promising and it’s still evolving. The fact that Adobe dumped flash says that they are betting that HTML5 is our future. What we need to see is HTML5 continue to evolve with a greater degree of access to native functionality so that pure web apps can deliver a comprehensive and high performing environment for ad driven apps.

I am certain this future is just around the corner and it will be interesting to see how much support HTML5 will get from the major operating systems – especially given Apple’s desire to keep their environment closed and Google’s focus on ad driven revenue.

New SDK for Android released

We have made available a new SDK for Android (version 2.06) that includes a range of new features and improvements as our team continue to work hard to maximize revenue for publishers.

There are a number of new functions that have been added in response to publishers’ requests. Included in this release are important enhancements for boosting notification revenues on recurring events.

Thanks to those publishers who provided feedback for this release. It is available for download from the portal as usual. The version 2 pdf documentation has been updated as well.

Achieved 63% Increase in Organic Downloads for our clients

We always suspected that advertising your app would deliver increased brand awareness so we decided to test this out. We found that we have achieved an increase of 63% in organic downloads for clients who use our innovative Cost per Install techniques to advertise and monetize mobile phone applications. Our exclusive strategies ensure the greatest degree of exposure for advertisers and can help app developers achieve higher revenues from their mobile phone products.

Each CPI campaign drives downloads and app installs. Downloads drive rankings that, in turn, generate even more organic downloads. This is especially important as it is becoming increasingly difficult to gain visibility on the app stores without being ranked highly.

CPI mobile phone app advertising campaigns have gained in popularity in recent years due to their high rate of success and unique delivery method. Once the application is installed on the end user’s mobile phone, the client’s advertisements are presented at various points during use including during the entry and exit splash screens and at strategic points during the operation of the applications. This has proven to be a successful method for delivering advertising. Our advertisers are getting large increases in their organic downloads due to the CPI campaigns they are running on LeadBolt. Our clients are receiving up to 1500-2000 installs per day with this effective solution.

We manage and promote mobile phone app campaigns to generate traffic and conversions for advertisers, all at the lowest cost possible. App installs start at $1 in the U.S. with lower rates available for international campaigns. There are no set up fees or additional fees, making this method essentially risk-free for the advertiser who only pays for actual installs. This innovative new way of advertising to mobile phone users is one of the fastest-growing and most popular ways to reach consumers and build visibility for the advertiser’s products and services in a fun and entertaining way.

Earn More From Your App Using Ad Format Combinations!

Start taking full advantage of LeadBolt’s app and mobile website monetization platform! If you are only using one ad format in your app, you are missing out on potential revenue. By combining different ad formats, you can monetize your app throughout the entire app usage cycle and boost your revenue.

You Have Nothing to Lose Except a New Revenue Stream!

LeadBolt is proud to have one of the most comprehensive ranges of ad formats in the industry. Our highest performing publishers have drastically increased their revenue and ad-effectiveness using killer combinations of ad types in their apps.

The best combination for you depends on your app and users, whether you have a wallpaper app using notifications + splash screens or a game app using rich media advanced overlays + text advanced overlays to beat banner blindness. Finding the best combination for your app is not easy, which is why we are sharing some killer combinations with you.

Turbo-boost Your App Income with a Killer Combination of Ad Types

  • Advanced Overlays + Notifications
  • Splash Screens + Banner Ads
  • Text Only Advanced Overlays + Image Banner Ads

To get started, log in to your account and create your killer ad combination! All our advanced ad formats can be easily added to your app using our unified SDK – One SDK does it all.

LeadBolt named one of Australia’s ‘Coolest’ businesses in National Award

We are so excited to have scored a place among Anthill’s Top 50 in its 2011 Annual Cool Company Awards! This is a national program developed in 2006 to recognize Australian companies that are doing things differently to bring about positive change.

Over 700 aspiring ‘cool companies’ were nominated for the 2011 awards, making ‘The Cools’ one of Australia’s largest business awards programs. Companies are not only judged on business variables, such as revenue and wealth, but heavily geared to consider other qualities, from the disruptive nature of the product or service to the culture of the organisation. The winners will be announced at the end of November.

Making it to the Top 50 is recognition of the way LeadBolt is trying to do things differently. We have invested a lot of time into innovation and development to ensure our advertisers, developers and publishers have access to cutting edge technology that increase ROI. It is great to be recognized for this effort!