AdMob announced a new feature that will tie advertising to iPhone application downloads. Good news for developers who want to evaluate their advertising budget.
I assume that the tracking can only be done for ads served in other iPhone applications where it is possible to get the UDID and not via ads served over the mobile web. (Present theory being that they use the UDID to tie the ad to the download). I don’t believe Safari provides the iPhone UDID when you browse web pages.
I sent an email to AdMob to confirm whether it works for mobile web as well as iPhone application ads.
Also notable from the announcement is this bullet:
The App Store is an effective distribution platform for free applications. The average acquisition cost for free applications is under $1.00, significantly less than average application download costs on the PC Web.
I had to reread that three times to make sure I read it correctly. I realize there are business models where paying someone to download your free app makes sense. It’s still pretty striking to see it laid out in those terms.