Apple bolsters its fledgling advertising business with a major hire [UPDATED]

Apple has hired a former Facebook product manager to join its ad platforms product engineering team, indicating the Cupertino giant’s advertising ambitions are growing.

UPDATE (May 12, 2021): Apple has confirmed that Antonio García Martínez is no longer with the company after an employee petition called for an investigation into his hiring.


  • Facebook’s Antonio Garcia Martinez has joined Apple.
  • He’s now with Apple’s ad platforms engineering team.
  • Apple’s ad platform powers ads in three Apple apps.

Apple hires Antonio Garcia Martinez

According to Garcia Martinez’s profile on LinkedIn, this former Facebook ads product manager is now involved with Apple’s ad platforms product engineering team. A major hire no matter how you look at it, the executive joined Apple in April 2021 and will be based out of Cupertino.

BusinessInsider has more on Garcia Martinez’s background:

Garcia Martinez, who worked at Facebook between 2011 and 2013, was an influential figure on the social network’s early ad product team. He first focused on its ad-targeting efforts before becoming product manager on FBX, Facebook’s now defunct real-time bidding ad exchange.

The hire doesn’t necessarily mean that Apple is prepping to take aim at Facebook and Google when it comes to online advertising. Years ago, Apple bought the ad optimization startup Quatro Wireless to create its own mobile ad network, dubbed iAd.

That went nowhere. The iAd network was subsequently shut down and Quatro’s technology wound up getting incorporated into Apple’s own advertising services that currently serve ads across three iOS apps: App Store, Apple News and Stocks.

How to stop iPhone apps from tracking you

Antonio also penned his autobiography “Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley” in which he compares Silicon Valley to the “chaos monkeys” of society and covers his tenure at Facebook.

Apple has recently released a new App Tracking Transparency feature in iOS 14.5 that requires apps to seek user consent before tracking the user across other apps and websites. The advertising industry took a major hit from the feature as the vast majority of users around the world, especially in the United States, opened out of tracking.

Just last week, Apple rolled out Search tab campaigns on the App Store.