Casual game advertising costs down 38% since iOS 14.6

According to a new report from Moloco, casual game advertising costs have declined 38% since the release of iOS 14.6, while core game advertising costs have increased 78%.

The report found that, while ad rates jumped across the board for both categories, on both iOS and Android, after the launch of iOS 14.5, rates declined after the release of iOS 14.6 when Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) kicked in, except for Core games on iOS, which continued on a sharp incline. 


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The average cost-per-install (CPI) for Casual games — such as those in the Arcade, Card, Puzzle, and related categories — has declined by 38% since the release of iOS 14.6 on May 24, 2021. On iOS, CPI rates for Casual games have declined 45%, while the decline is slightly less (30%) on Android.

Advertising costs initially spiked on both platforms after the launch of iOS 14.5 (by 20% on iOS and 97% on Android), before declining after the launch of iOS 14.6, when game publishers were required to prompt users to either grant or deny access to their device identifier as part of Apple’s App Tracking Transparency (ATT) framework.

Meanwhile, in the Core games category — which includes Action, Sports, Racing, and Card games, for example — both iOS and Android saw advertising costs increase after iOS 14.5 was released (10% on iOS and 67% on Android). But that trend did not stay consistent following the release of iOS 14.6; average CPI on iOS increased an additional 64%, while average CPI on Android saw an 8% decrease. 

These trends demonstrate how the value advertisers place on each category and each platform have come to overlap — Core games are traditionally considered more valuable than Casual games, and iOS traffic is considered more valuable than Android traffic (due to higher IAP conversion rate).

Written by Jordan Bevan

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