The vast majority of Apple iPhone users are leaving app tracking disabled since the feature went live on April 26 with the release of iOS 14.5, in a major blow to Facebook which has been issuing warnings of doom and gloom for months.
According to the latest data from analytics firm Flurry, just 4% of iPhone users in the US have actively chosen to opt into app tracking after updating their device to iOS 14.5. The data is based on a sampling of 2.5 million daily mobile active users.
When looking at users worldwide who allow app tracking, the figure rises to 12% of users in a 5.3 million user sample size.
Since the update almost two weeks ago, Flurry’s figures show a stable rate of app-tracking opt-outs, with the worldwide figure hovering between 11-13%, and 2-5% in the US. If the first fortnight is anything to go by, the could be trouble ahead for Facebook users, among others.
The social media giant has already started attempting to convince users that they must enable tracking in iOS 14.5 if they want to help keep Facebook and Instagram “free of charge”.
It has warned that the app update could cut the money earned through its ad network by half, hitting small businesses the hardest. And it argues that sharing data with advertisers is key to giving users “better experiences”.
It also said that Apple is being hypocritical, because it will force businesses to turn to subscriptions and other in-app payments for revenue, from which Apple takes a cut.
In its latest blog, Facebook appeared to accept the changes and promised “new advertiser experiences and measurement protocols”. It admitted that the ways digital advertisers collect and use information needed to “evolve” to one that will rely on “less data”.
Flurry Analytics, owned by Verizon Media, is used in over 1 million mobile applications, providing aggregated insights across 2 billion mobile devices per month. Flurry intends to update its figures every weekday for the daily opt-in rate as well as the share of users that apps cannot ask to track, both in the US and globally.
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