Speaker Spotlight: Joseph Iris talks machine learning for UA

Pocket Gamer Connects London is coming 23-24 January 2023. Time to meet some of the leading industry names that will be on stage at the event

Speaker Spotlight: Joseph Iris talks machine learning for UA

The leading games industry conference is almost here. Pocket Gamer Connects London is now less than one week away and what a line up of speakers we’ve got in store for you.

On January 23rd and 24th Pocket Gamer Connects hits home soil, returning to London for two days of insight sharing, and contact making interspersed with our world famous thought-provoking panels, seminars, keynotes and more.

There's limitless networking opportunities and our expert sessions are your chance to get up close and meet some of the biggest names in mobile games in what will be our biggest and best PG Connects London yet!

In the build up to the conference – and to give you a sneak preview of what to expect – we are spotlighting some of the authorities in the games industry that will be sharing their wisdom, today we speak to Joseph Iris, the director of ML Product at

Joseph will be giving a talk on the value of utilising machine learning for UA. He’ll talk about how scaling, selecting creatives and more can be made easier by utilising new tech that automates the discovery process. Offering his lessons and insights on how teams can integrate it quickly and effectively.

Be sure to join us at PG Connects London on January 23rd to 24th 2023 to find out more! 

Pocket What’s the most common mistake you see being made in the games sector?

Joseph Iris: Not figuring out that re-targeting is basically money on the table even in earlier stages of the product life cycle. Measurement can be tricky at first but as soon as the fundamentals are established and with the right considerations in mind (being correct segmentation and correctly understanding your churn) and the right KPIs it can help your growth immensely.

If you could give other mobile games companies one piece of advice, what would it be?

Question what looks 'too good to be true'. The UA landscape in 2023 is unfortunately still riddled with fraud and attribution manipulation, but a basic grasp of what metrics to look at in order to detect most types of fraud alongside basic due diligence procedures goes a long way. If an 'ad-network' that has three employees on LinkedIn is in charge of over 25% of your paid attributions then yes - it is too good to be true, and in fact it's false. You'd be surprised how common these occurrences still are.

What is the single biggest challenge facing the mobile games industry today?

Decreasing attention spans. We're living in a time where in terms of overall content consumption short videos are king and a 5-minute video on YouTube needs a 'too long didn't watch' attached to it. The same applies for content consumption in-game - the games that will prosper for the younger generations are ones that can quickly introduce new, high-quality content to their game on a daily basis. Generative AI can help with some parts of this but making sure the content sticks is key and will take a lot of the product teams' attention.

What is the most overhyped trend from the last 12 months - and why?

NFTs and Web-3 anything - obviously the blockchain as a technological advancement is huge but the 'applications' that sprung out of nowhere set back everything related to it significantly. Things move fast these days so we're not talking a setback as long as decade, but probably a couple of years.

What key trend should we be paying attention to in the next 12 months?

How measurement and attribution would change as soon as Apple's SKAN and Google's Privacy Sandbox takes shape. It's going to take a while until Google commits to it but luckily, they are communicating their considerations and so far, they seem far more reasonable than how SKAN looked initially. Yes - signal will be lost, but market prices would adjust accordingly and the smarter players in the UA space will adjust quickly - and thrive.

What do you enjoy most about working in the mobile games industry?

Specifically working on the programmatic UA side, I keep being amazed at the overall global scale of mobile ads and how quickly things change. In terms of machine learning related challenges - there's nothing quite like it, your research goes to production fast and furiously (pun intended) and with the right team and mindset amazing achievements can be made in rapid succession.

What was your first-ever mobile phone?

I'm pretty sure it was a Nokia 5140, and yes, I feel much older after Googling that, thank you. Snake was dope!

Find out more about what can do for you here

Find out more about Pocket Gamer Connects London and get your tickets right here!

Staff Writer

Iwan is a Cardiff-based freelance writer, who joined the Pocket Gamer Biz site fresh-faced from University before moving to the editorial team in November of 2023.