Apple Greenlights Push Notification Ads

Opening a new avenue for advertisers, Apple has decided to let them target mobile users via push notification.

This is a big change for Apple, which has historically shunned the use of push notifications for marketing purposes.

Yet the tech titan isn’t giving advertisers free reign.  

“Push notifications should not be used for promotions or direct marketing purposes unless customers have explicitly opted in to receive them,” according to new App Store guidelines.

Going forward, Apple will expect developers to clearly display consent language in the user interface of their apps if they want to reach consumers via push notification.

Developers will also need to provide app users with a simple and straightforward method to opt out from receiving notifications. 

“Abuse of these services may result in revocation of your privileges,” the new App Store guidelines warn.

Overzealous marketers should also remember that few consumers like receiving ads via push notification.

Last year, a study conducted by Ogury found that phone alerts -- including push notifications and texts -- were the least popular method of receiving ads among respondents.

The study, for which the mobile tech startup examined the attitudes of nearly 140,000 U.S. mobile users, found 82% of users globally preferred to receive marketing messages through mobile ads or emails when given a choice.

Despite tepid guidance, Apple said it sold $56 billion in phones during its fiscal first quarter -- which was up 8%, year-over-year.

CEO Tim Cook attributed the surprisingly strong sales to “exceptional demand” for the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max.

That helped Apple post record quarterly revenue of $91.8 billion, which was up 9%, year-over-year.

More recently, however, Apple said it didn’t expect to meet revenue guidance previously provided for its fiscal second quarter, due to the devastating impact of the coronavirus in China.

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