By Leena Rao
Millennial Media’s monthly mobile report is out today, giving us a view into how each OS and manufacturer is performing on the mobile ad network. Millennial, whose ads reach 90.3 million users monthly in the U.S.; reports that for the third month in a row, Android continued to lead iOS as the largest Smartphone OS the network with over half (51 percent) of all U.S. mobile ad impression share (which is around 21 billion each month) in February. This is actually down from 54 percent share in January.
iOS followed with 27 percent of mobile ad impression share, which is decrease of 1 percent. RIM (RIMM) followed with a 14 percent impression share, which is up 3 percent from last month. According to a recent IDC report, Millennial is the third largest network behind Google AdMob and Apple’s iAd, so data shared on Millennial’s network is certainly indicative of the state of mobile advertising.
Millennial actually expanded its connected device platform stats this month, which measures impression share on tablets, gaming consoles and other connected devices. In February, iOS accounted for 80 percent of ad impression share with Android trailing far behind with 17 percent of the impression share. Millennial accounts Android’s presence in the category to growth of the Samsung Galaxy Tablet.
Generally, Connected Devices increased 56 percent month-over-month in February and accounted for 14 percent of the Smartphone, Feature Phone & Connected Device Impression Share. Clearly, tablet devices are becoming a growing platform for advertising as more consumers buy iPads and Android tablets.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) topped the list of leading device manufacturers on Millennial’s network, with 28 percent of the Top 15 Manufacturers impression share in January, an 8 percent increase month-over-month. Android smartphone manufacturer Samsung grew 50 percent month-over-month to reclaim the number two position on list, passing HTC, which took 11.35 percent of share.
In terms of actual devices, the iPhone took the top spot with 16.75 percent share. But Android manufacturers Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) and HTC also performed well in terms of top mobile devices on the ad network. Samsung had three new Smartphones enter the Top 30 Mobile Devices ranking in February and HTC had seven devices on the list with a combined impression share of 10 percent. HTC actually passed RIM (6 devices) this month in terms of the number of devices on the Top 30 list. In total, Android devices accounted for 19 of the Top 30 Mobile Devices, up from 16 devices in January.
Touch Screen devices grew 4 percent month-over-month, with approximately 59% share of impressions in the February Device Input Mix. This growth, says Millennial is largely attributed to Smartphones accounting for 25 of the Top 30 Mobile Devices.
Millennial’s report also included a few unique stats this month. For example, the network examined the impact of the Verizon iPhone, which was broadly released in mid-February. Millennial says that the Verizon iPhone represented 4.5 percent of all U.S. iPhone impressions on the network in the first two weeks following the launch.
In terms of carrier distributions, each of the four major U.S. carriers having an impression share of 10% or greater on Millennial’s network. Verizon (NYSE:VZ) accounted for largest share, with 20% of the carrier impression share, followed by Sprint with 13 percent of impression share in February.
Android’s share of ad impressions actually dropped slightly this month, which shows just how much of a competitive race there is between Android, Apple and even RIM for share. As we heard recently from Nielsen, because RIM and Apple create and sell their own smartphones with their operating systems, these companies are actually in a better position in the three-way race (in terms of device manufacturers).