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Jobs: "mobile ads suck"

updated 04:00 pm EST, Fri January 15, 2010

Apple Quattro deal about fixing mobile ads

Apple's deal to buy Quattro is part of Steve Jobs' own goal of 'fixing' the mobile ad space, an apparent scoop claimed late Thursday. An inside source said to be familiar with his views says he believes "mobile ads suck" and that Apple plans to overhaul iPhone and iPod touch ads in the same way they did music with iTunes. These would be "completely new" and could do away with many forms of search.

The move would be a response to trends in iPhone apps and complaints from developers. Many have felt compelled to offer apps for free but have griped that ads from AdMob and other mobile promoters don't generate enough money to support their businesses. Paid apps have also hovered near the 99-cent mark and themselves have little profit.

It similarly represents a reaction to Google's acquisition of AdMob, the leading mobile advertiser. Observers often believe that Apple tried to buy AdMob itself but was thwarted when Google suddenly stepped in with its own bid. Leaving the newly merged advertiser would not only give Google control of more than half of iPhone ads but Android and many other platforms as well. Buying Quattro not only helps keep AdMob in check but gives Apple the opportunity to integrate its own commercial system with ads, such as closer monitoring of click-throughs and impressions.

Both the AdMob and Quattro deals represent increased friction between companies that had previously been extremely close. Google continues to provide much of the underlying web and map searching on the iPhone and has a presence in apps like iMovie with YouTube, but it has repeatedly had to back away as first Android and now Chrome OS put it too much into direct conflict with Apple's objectives. Neither company has openly cut its links with the other, but Apple has taken steps such as acquiring Placebase to avoid depending on Google for map data.

By Electronista Staff


  1. jpellino

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 1999


    Better idea

    Mobile ads should be opt-in only. Sorry, Steve. I give you money, you give me mobile service. I pay a lot for it. Additional payments should be my choice. Does HMTL 5 have an "Advertisment" tag in it? It should.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Re: Better idea

    Even if it did have the tag, it wouldn't help you on the iPhone, since you can't install any patches or the like to safari. And do you think Apple would actually allow you to hide the ads they work so hard to get to you?

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    Many have felt compelled to offer apps for free but have griped that ads from AdMob and other mobile promoters don't generate enough money to support their businesses. Paid apps have also hovered near the 99-cent mark and themselves have little profit.

    Apps have value. If you've spent time and money developing an app, why are you wasting your time listening to cheap b******* who want free apps? Of course they want free apps. But that doesn't mean you have to make yours free.

    And no kidding the ads don't pay for anything. Are there people who actually thought "Hey, no one clicks ads on the web, but, hey, in an app? It's a winner!"

    BTW, from the actual article:
    Apple could employ its user data and geo-location technology to make ads more relevant, so that a user cruising the mobile Web at lunchtime could receive an ad for specials at a nearby restaurant.

    Well, Apple COULD do that. But then they'd be violating your privacy by using your location and data to target you ads. That would be something MS would do, not Apple.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    And mobile ads suck? As opposed to all those wonderful ads you see in your desktop browser, you mean? Or compared to the commercials you see on TV or at the theaters? Seriously, most ads suck.

  1. George3

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2008


    speaking of ads on my browser - clicktoflash!

    ClicktoFlash is my favorite new Flash killer. It stops those annoying processor clogging, bandwidth stealing F-ing Flash ads that don't offer a STOP button. They just play and play and play. Sometimes as many as 3 ads per page.

    If Flash slithers over to the iPhone I hope I can install ClicktoFlash there too.

    Note to you Flash animation ad creators - YOUR ADS SUCK!

  1. Eriamjh

    Addicted to MacNN

    Joined: Oct 2001


    Attn SJ....

    All Ads SUCK!!!

  1. resuna

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2005


    In case Steve hasn't got the message...

    Even if every ad out there had the quality, humor, and originality of Apple's "1984" ad... they would still suck. You can't make ads *not* suck. Don't try.

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