updated 08:00 am EDT, Fri June 25, 2010
Microsoft to allow WP7 ads in tiles, notifications
When Windows Phone 7 ships it will let companies push ads even outside of apps, the company said during a presentation at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival. Strategy and Business Development GM Kostas Mallios explained that the push notification system will let companies deliver ads not just to the home screen tiles but to alerts at the top of the screen. Customers can choose to opt in or opt out, but Mallios characterized it as being a way of having always-on ad access.
"For marketers... this is actually turning out, in my view, to be an ad-serving machine," he said.
The approach is likely to draw controversy as it would make Windows Phone 7 the first smartphone platform to encourage ads outside of apps or the web. Despite Google's role as one of the largest ad platforms, it has limited its advertising on Android to the web and will only now have a significant footprint in apps through AdMob. Apple's iAd system is also limited strictly to apps and can't use iOS push notifications.
Windows Phone 7 is expected to launch in October and will have some level of customization of the UI by carriers, but the company is imposing tight limits on carriers and hardware designers for what's possible for the actual interface, even if it will allow home screen ads. [via SeattlePI]