What is the iAd?
Introduced in the US in July 2010, the iAd platform delivers targeted, HTML5-powered, rich media ads directly to iPhone 4 and iPod Touch users. Targeting users in their favourite apps, it is a new way for advertisers to reach millions while providing a significant new revenue stream for developers.
How does it work?
The platform is built into iOS 4 and lets users stay within their current app while engaging with an ad, even if they are watching a video, playing a game or using an in-ad purchase to download an app or buy iTunes content.
How is revenue distributed?
Apple will sell, produce and host ads on behalf of advertisers, giving developers 60 per cent of the iAd Network revenue, which is paid via iTunes Connect.
Why is it revolutionary?
Last year a study found that consumers spend an average of 53 seconds with rich media ads, and are 25 times more likely to spend meaningful time with these types of ads than to click on them. According to Apple, engagement times for the iAd ads average more than 60 seconds per visit. With consumer interaction on mobile devices set to surge over the next couple of years; video content being one of the biggest areas of growth; the interactivity and depth of the user experience will provide brands with an unmatched opportunity to reach customers in the digital sphere.
Why might this be important to customer publishers?
Many branded content providers are looking at developing iPad versions of magazines. Some of these will be based on existing print titles, others will be created especially with the strengths of tablets PCs (interaction, high resolution screen etc) in mind. Publishers will be able to work with Apple using iAds to monetise some of that content. At the present time iAds are not available for iPad magazine apps. Industry observers reckon that iAds for the iPad are most likely to be launched when Apple upgrades the iPad operating software later this year.