Apple is all set to start displaying ads in the “Today” section of the Apple App Store from this week. The leading tech company, reportedly, announced its business decision to developers over an email. Apple App Store earlier too had featured ads but this was only limited to the app in general or the search-based results or “suggested” section. The placement of advertisements in the “Today” section, which is a curated space to feature all the apps picked by the Apple editorial staff themselves, is a step in a new direction. The “Today” section is what a user is exposed to first when they open the App Store.
The news was first reported by Macrumors and they also revealed the company’s plan to optimise the “You Might Also Like” section of the App Store. The changes would reflect in all countries across the globe, except China.
All advertisements in an App Store can be identified with an Ad icon with the background highlighted with blue colour.
Apple’s official website, about the App store ad placement, mentions the expected changes and briefs, “with a Today tab ad, your app can appear prominently on the front page of the App Store — making it some of the first content users see when they begin their App Store visit,”.
The company has also made it clear that there is no automated functionality for advertisements to appear on the App Store. Only apps that will be approved from the Apple Search ads will be visible in the “Today” section under the “Ad” icon.
According to Apple, the functionality to place advertisements in the “Today” or “You May Also Like” sections would give an opportunity to app developers to make their apps more noticeable and thus, reach more people. It can eventually become a good property for developers to promote their apps to the maximum number of Apple App Store users of iPhone and iPad.
On the other hand, legal expert Florian Mueller while countering the statement made by Apple, tweeted about the “You Might Also Like” ads that these are just “another means of increasing the effective app tax rate, forcing developers to buy ads on their own app pages in order to avoid that others steer customers away from there.”
Earlier in August, Mark Gurman of Bloomberg disclosed Apple’s immediate future plan of expanding their current advertising revenue to a minimum of $10 billion per year. In a newsletter, Gurman had predicted, “On the App Store, display ads are currently shown in the search tab in the Suggested panel. Apple will also soon expand ads to the main Today tab and within third-party app download pages.” Gurman also said that the tech giant would soon launch the search result ads in Google Maps, a feature that the company has been testing for some time internally.
Other Apple ventures such as Apple News and Stocks already feature the traditional banner advertisement. Though no news has surfaced about placing more ads in these pages, the company is apparently already working towards bringing similar advertisement features to Apple Podcasts, Apple Books or even Apple TV.