Mobile Ad and App Companies Looking Hard at Connected TV Apps

written by: Richard Kastelein

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Business Insider is reporting that mobile ad companies and app developers are eyeballing developing Connected TV apps in the living room - and are excited about connected TVs because the TV ad market is still ridiculously bigger than the mobile ad market.

As millions of people hook up their videogame consoles to the Internet for network gaming and Netflix streaming, add new devices to their living rooms like Apple TV or Roku boxes, and as more TVs themselves ship with Internet access and apps, the potential for advertising on these devices is increasing.

So mobile ad companies are apparently starting to tinker:

  • At least one big mobile ad network is experimenting with ads for Sony PS3s.
  • Google TV already includes some tools to support advertising, though ads aren't running.
  • Other firms are looking at ads for Apple TV, Samsung, and other platforms. (You would assume that Apple would be coming out with an iAd for Apple TV at some point

That said, the companies Dan Frommer from Business Insider spoke to are allegedly realistic and patient, and are still mostly focused on the more immediate markets — smartphones and tablets — versus connected TVs but also think they have a leg up here because of their experience with apps on other limited-power, relatively closed-ecosystem devices, like smartphones and tablets. But it's still early days:

  • The connected TV app ecosystem is in an extremely early, immature, fragmented stage. There is the Yahoo Widgets platform and some very early apps for Google TV — not much.
  • Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Sony's PS3 don't have open app platforms yet.
  • Apple hasn't announced an app platform or SDK for the Apple TV yet. This will need to mature before there's much of a developer community to work with.


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