Much Ado About ‘iAds’

Seems that since Apple started serving ads from their new mobile advertising platform, named ‘iAds’, there’s been a bit of a tizzy, with people mocking them for saying that they are ads that you’ll want to see, and how dare they advertise ads in your mobile phone as a “feature”.

First of all, I hate ads, I use ad-blockers whenever possible, pointedly don’t look at billboards when possible, and so on. I’m also an Apple Fanboy, but I don’t think that matters here.

Yes, people are right about ads as a “feature” being stupid and while I’m sure that there are some that will be more interactive and interesting, but I think this will wear off as quickly as those full page flash ads where the webpage would jiggle or crumble or whatever it was that had their 15 minutes a year or two ago.

However, look at it this way:

  • It doesn’t add any ads to your mobile apps.

    This is just an ad network that app developers can use, so chances are if you have an app with no ads in it, that’ll stay the same.

  • It’ll make the current ads less annoying.

    Right now if you have ads in your apps and click on them, you get exited out of the app and it opens up the mobile browser to show you the ad. While this has gotten less annoying with the advent of iOS 4 and multi-tasking, so you don’t have to “lose” your place in the app when it exits, us older iPhone owners still have that PITA factor if you accidentally mis-click. With iAds, the big deal about them is they stay in-app, so your app doesn’t stop running when they play, or give you an interactive whatchamacallit or whatever. So if you click the ad for whatever reason, you just close it and you’re still in your app.

Of course, that’s my guessing as I have yet to see iAds show up in any of my apps. If instead iAds show up in apps that aren’t supposed to have ads, and they’re forced on users, show up full screen 3 times an hour and use the “we’ll interrupt you so you remember to buy our crap” model, I retract everything I said above and will start looking much harder at Android, but I seriously doubt that Apple, a company that prides itself on user experience, will do that sort of a dick move.

I’m not saying that it’s a good thing, just that it’s really no worse than the current state of ads in mobile apps. I won’t comment on the whole “locking google out” thing though, cause no one seems to be talking about that, and I don’t know much about anti-compete law (unless I’m bitching about Microsoft of course).