During this week’s Apple WWDC rumors have started to circulate about Apple trying to reestablish its ad sales platform. The reported plan is for Apple to sell mobile ads on iOS apps downloaded from the iStore. The ads would run on third party apps like Pinterest and Snapchat, with a rev share going back to the participating publishers. Theoretically Apple could sell ads on one-off publishers, or if they get enough participating apps they could create an entirely new mobile ad network.
You may recall that Apple shuttered its iAd sales platform back in 2015. That move effectively ceded digital ad sales control to Google and Facebook. Now that Apple’s device sales growth is starting to flatten they’re looking for new revenue streams, which is leading them right back to the same play they tried running years ago. So will a new Apple ad network succeed where iAd failed? It’s hard to know for sure. But one thing’s for certain, there are heck of a lot more mobile ads being sold today than when iAd was alive. So the opportunity may look too appealing for Apple to continue to sit out of.