iOS 14 Impact & Guidance Overview
Last updated, May 2024

At WWDC 2020, Apple announced several privacy related updates for iOS 14. Most notably, Apple will implement a new AppTrackingTransparency(ATT) framework that will require apps to ask permission from users to access IDFA (Identifier for Advertiser). This framework is expected to go into effect starting on April 26, 2021. 

IDFA has been a key identity for ad tech industry on measurement and delivery of mobile advertising campaigns. This update will require changes in the way marketers advertise on iOS devices. Below is a guide to help marketers navigate and prepare for this change. 

TikTok's Decision to Show Apple's ATT prompt

In light of Apple's upcoming AppTrackingTransparency Framework enforcement, TikTok will show Apple's tracking permission prompt to support the needs of our brands and partners while respecting our users' privacy choices. We take great care to safeguard the information of our community and provide them with the privacy, safety, and security controls to choose the TikTok experience that's right for them. Moreover, we are fully committed to building future advertising solutions that best supports brands and partner's needs while staying committed to our privacy-first approach.  

iOS 14 ATT framework will go into effect on April 26, 2021

Starting on April 26, 2021, Apple’s AppTrackingTransparency (ATT) framework will go into effect. Apps will now be required to ask permission from users who are on iOS 14.5 devices to access their device’s advertising identifier. 

From April 26, 2021, the only way to target iOS 14.5 users will be through TikTok's iOS 14 Dedicated Campaigns. This feature is available for all advertisers and campaigns can be created by choosing the objective, selecting the iOS app and setting the toggle for 'Deliver to iOS14+ conversion events' to ON at the ad group level.

Note:Non Dedicated Campaigns will continue to deliver to iOS 14.4 and below versions after ATT enforcement. That said, audience sizes will decrease as more users upgrade to iOS 14.5 so it's important to create iOS 14 dedicated campaigns to reach iOS 14.5 users. 

Please see a summary below:

Campaign Type


After ATT Enforcement (April 26, 2021)

Dedicated Campaign

iOS 14.0+ 

iOS 14.0+ 

Non-Dedicated Campaign

Full Traffic 

iOS 14.4 and below 

In order to reach iOS 14.5 users, all advertisers should create iOS 14 dedicated campaigns and be ready to scale their budgets on these campaigns as user adoption grows. This will help maximize advertisers' campaigns reach for targeting iOS 14 users.

Additionally, performance of iOS 14 campaigns will differ from their existing campaigns with an expected higher cost per action. This is primarily due to delayed postback of the SKAN API so it's important to consider looking at cost per action over a longer time horizon with a sufficient lookback window. We recommend closely monitoring the performance and delivery of all iOS 14 app campaigns and, if necessary, adjust budgets and bids to achieve campaign goals. 

Finally, there are several changes to other ad products like targeting, split tests, etc. that will take effect on April 26, 2020. Please see the additional articles for product-level guidance to understand changes and recommended action to take when ATT is enforced. 

How to prepare today for Apple's upcoming changes

The changes below are actions you can immediately take to help prepare for iOS 14 changes.

Review your Mobile Measurement Partner Settings 

TikTok will support measurement and optimization based on SKAdNetwork (SKAN) API, Apple's attribution solution. TikTok is currently engaged with all of our Mobile Measurement Partners (MMPs) who have either released or will release an updated version of their SDK which supports SKAdNetwork API. Finally, TikTok will support SKAdNetwork reporting for dedicated iOS 14 campaigns in both Business Manager and Events Manager.

Recommended Actions

  • Update your Mobile Measurement Partner SDK. Updating to the SKAN-supported version of the MMP SDK will ensure that your  app is registered for SKAN-based attribution and gives you the ability to optimize and measure installs and post-install events from iOS 14 users. 

  • Complete the Conversion event configuration in their MMP interface.This ensures that ad networks like TikTok can receive post-install events and event values from SKAN API in order to provide optimization and measurement for iOS 14 campaigns. 

  • Send all events to TikTok via your MMP. In order to help improve performance of your app campaigns, we recommend sending TikTok all data - including unattributed data - from your MMP.  

This helps in both allowing downstream systems to better adjust and optimize to the SKAdNetwork as well as excluding existing installs from your app campaigns. Please check with your MMP on how to enable sending full channel data including unattributed event data to TikTok. 

Changes to the delivery of App campaigns

After Apple's ATT framework goes into effect, there will be several changes to how you can reach iOS 14 traffic across various objectives. The most important change is that you will need to create new dedicated campaigns to reach iOS 14.5 traffic when using the app install objective or catalog sales objective for app prospecting. Due to limitations of SKAdNetwork API, advertisers will operate with the following limitations when creating dedicated iOS 14 campaigns.

  • Each iOS app will be limited to 11 active campaigns and 2 ad groups per campaign. 2 ad groups per campaign is now supported with the launch of the multi ad-group feature.

  • Dedicated iOS 14 campaigns can be created from multiple ad accounts, but the total number of active campaigns will be limited to 11. 

  • Dedicated iOS 14 campaigns across all relevant objectives will count towards the 11 limit, and after reaching the 11 campaign limit, advertisers will need to wait at least 72 hours after a campaign has ended to free up a campaign slot for a new campaign.

Recommended Actions

  • Account Consolidation:

    • While there is no limit on number of ad accounts that can be used for iOS 14 dedicated campaigns, given the limit on number of campaigns(11), we recommend streamlining account management for iOS to use fewer accounts (ideally a single account but no more than 2-3 total accounts) for all your app campaigns 

    • Use your existing TikTok Ads Manager account rather than creating a brand new one for iOS 14 dedicated campaigns, as historical data will help optimize your iOS dedicated campaign performance.

    • Use the same account for your iOS and Android campaigns as it will provide our backend system with additional signals for better iOS 14 campaign optimization.

    • When using agencies or resellers for app campaigns, please share the limit on number of campaigns per app and determine how many campaigns you want to allocate for agency usage vs. retaining for in-house management. 

  • Campaign Consolidation:

    • In order to manage the 11 campaign limit, we recommendgrouping countries, consolidating lookalike and interest group audiences where advertisers either have similar bids or similar performance when measured by ARPU.  For example, if they have two separate campaigns targeting English speaking audiences in the UK and US with similar bid and optimization goal, they can consolidate those to a single campaign.  In cases where you want greater flexibility in testing audiences or creatives, you should use the multi-ad group feature which allows 2 ad groups per dedicated campaign. 

    • Standalone app install campaigns for Pangle will count towards the 11 campaign limit, so consider using auto-placement in order to deliver ads across TikTok and Pangle. 

    • When thinking about your creative strategy, look at ad level SKAN reporting to understand creative-level performance. Leverage Automated Creative Optimization where possible to let the system find best performing creatives.