Android passes iOS in mobile ad traffic for first time
Google's Android platform has passed Apple's iOS in mobile ad traffic for the first time, according to Opera Mediaworks' quarterly mobile ad report.
In the first quarter of 2014, Android had 42.8 percent of mobile ad traffic, while iOS had 38.2 percent of mobile ad traffic. Much of Android's gain came at the expense of BlackBerry and Symbian, the discontinued Nokia mobile operating system.
"With the Samsung [Galaxy] S4 and other newer Android phones, you're seeing more parity in users," Opera Mediaworks CEO Mahi de Silva is quoted by Robert Hof, a Forbes's contributor, as saying. As a result, "the quality of the ads served on Android devices is also more at parity with iOS," he adds.
Android's position at the top of mobile ad traffic might boost its position among app developers. "It used to be that developers focused on iOS first… We're starting to see they'll be equally compelled to come out on both platforms," says de Silva.
At the same time, iOS retained the lead in terms of mobile ad revenue, with 52.3 percent in the first quarter, compared with 33.5 percent for Android, which is up from 26.7 percent in the year ago quarter.
Among Android device makers, Samsung leads the way with 60.2 percent of Android mobile ad impressions, followed by LG at 11.1 percent and Motorola at 5.7 percent in the first quarter of 2014.
In terms of top app category, social led in terms of mobile add traffic, while arts and entertainment generated the most revenue and business, finance and investing had the highest revenue per impression in the 2014 first quarter.
The U.S. market generates the majority of mobile ad traffic and revenue, but Asia has passed Europe as the second largest mobile ad market, according to data from the Opera Mediaworks platform.