It’s been more than 3 and a half years, but I finally caved and popped my iphone cherry when I bought the new iphone 4 three weeks ago.
Since then, barely a minute has passed when I haven’t been checking my phone, playing a game or downloading a new (free) app.
It’s safe to say, I’m addicted. My family is even looking into having an iphone-ectomy surgery done to get it out of my hand.
The one thing that really stands out after the first 3 weeks of using my shiny new iphone is the difference in the way ads are now placed. When I go into an app it actually asks me if I want to turn the ‘ad’ function on or off. I remember when using my partner’s iphone 3, ads kept popping up through, within, and on top of the apps. Maybe it’s just me, but the last thing I wanted to be distracted by when I’m rocking out to Metallica on tap tap, is how many single people want to meet me. Really? Right now? Because I’m playing tap tap? I doubt that was on their online dating wish-list somehow.
I can, however, appreciate apple wanting to cash in on the huge potential for marketing on the iphone/ipad, especially if Steve Jobs is correct when he says “The average user spends over 30 minutes every day using apps on their phone. If we said we wanted to put an ad up every 3 minutes, that’s 10 ads per device per day. That would be 1b ad opportunities per day.”
Still I couldn’t help but wonder, can’t we at least make this a little relevant to what we’re doing or take advantage of the location capabilities and base it around where we are??
Well, looks like Apple has the answer for everything. Apple has clarified advertising rules to allow targeted ads to users, based on location – but only if they allow it, thus ‘opting in’ to the ads.
Apple’s February statement notified app developers: “If you build your application with features based on a user’s location, make sure these features provide beneficial information. If your app uses location-based information primarily to enable mobile advertisers to deliver targeted ads based on a user’s location, your app will be returned to you by the App Store Review Team for modification before it can be posted to the App Store” Isn’t that relieving? No more being bombarded with ads that don’t have any relevance to what we’re doing, but would be beneficial to location apps such as ‘around me’ and ‘true local.’
Furthermore, Steve Jobs announced new advertising platforms for iPhone applications. Dubbed “iAd” the new ads are designed to integrate with iPhone/iPad apps, meaning the user is exposed to the ads within the app–not taken to some web page to view the content. Apple plans to host and sell the ads, and will give the developer 60% of the collected revenues. The ads will be interactive, take advantage of video, and allow developers to create free apps and monetize them with the ads.
Steve Jobs said at the ios4 release; “We have a lot of free or reasonably priced apps… we like that, but we have to find ways to make money. So we are putting ads into apps, and for lack of a better way to say it, we think most of this kind of advertising sucks.” it’s at this point I started to think; clearly I wasn’t the only one complaining about this problem!!
At the ios4 release, Jobs showed-off one they created as a demo for Disney’s Toy Story: It was fully interactive, and looked similar to a native app — it actually had a game integrated in it. Jobs said, “”This is a new kind of mobile ad. Have you ever seen a mobile ad like this? Anything even close?”
These ads are looking a lot more like apps that you download to your phone…to look at apps..hmm how does Apple do it??
Ritchie, R, 2010, ‘Apple shows off iAd mobile advertising platform,’ TiPb Blog, April 8 http://www.tipb.com/2010/04/08/apple-shows-iad-mobile-advertising-platform/
iOS Dev Center, 2010, ‘News and announcements for IOS developers’, Apple Inc, February
iad, 2010, ‘Engage, capitivate, connect,’ Apple Inc