Mobile Advertising

Q1 2023 Abandoned Mobile Apps Report: Pixalate

49% of likely child-directed apps from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store are abandoned (2+ years with no updates)

Pixalate, the market-leading fraud protection, privacy, and compliance analytics platform for Connected TV (CTV) and Mobile Advertising, today released the Q1 2023 Abandoned Mobile Apps Report, analyzing apps from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store that have been “abandoned.” An app is considered abandoned if it has not been updated in the app store in at least two years.

Abandoned apps pose risks for consumers as updates to apps could incorporate not only bug fixes but also changes to data collection practices, consumer opt-in or age verification practices, and notices of privacy policy updates. The longer an app goes without a software update, the greater the risk that the app’s consumer data handling practices are not up-to-date with the world’s rapidly-evolving privacy protection regulations.

The report analyzes app profile information such as developer country of origin, existence of a privacy policy, app store category, and its child-directedness under the COPPA Rule. It also contains insight into the apps’ behaviors observed in the programmatic advertising bid stream such as transmission of personal information including location data, and estimated ad spend.

Key Findings:

  • 1.97M+ abandoned apps in Q1 2023, +16% YoY increase, from 1.69M+ in Q1 2022
  • Super-abandoned apps: 62%+ YoY increase (up to 401k) among Google apps; -38% YoY decrease in Apple App Store (down to 202k)
  • $4.6M+ estimated programmatic ad spend on abandoned apps in Q1 2023, -53% YoY decrease from $10M+ in Q1 2022
  • 45% (21k+) of apps registered in Russia are abandoned, 41% (33k+) in China, and 37% (138k+) in the U.S.
  • +107% YoY increase in abandoned apps with ads transmitting geo location and user IP address in ad bid stream
  • 49% (70k+) of likely child-directed apps are abandoned and 27% (39k) “super-abandoned”, in the Apple App Store as of Q1 2023

Pixalate’s Abandoned Mobile Apps Report: Q1 2023 includes:

  • By App Store Analysis
  • Programmatic Ads Analysis
  • Transparency Analysis
  • Country of Registry Analysis
  • App Store Category Analysis
  • Likely Child-Directed App Analysis
  • Abandoned Developers Analysis

Download a free copy of the report here: Abandoned Mobile Apps Report: Q1 2023

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