Google presented an early look Wednesday at how it’s starting to think about ads for virtual reality applications.
A team working in Google’s Area 120 ideas incubator has come up with a concept for a native video ad format that users can engage with in mobile VR apps.
The experimental format starts as a cube. Users can either tap it or stare at it for a few seconds to open a video player and watch an ad.
Developers Aayush Upadhyay and Neel Rao explain in the blog post that they are operating under the principles that VR ad formats should be easy to implement, native, customizable, useful and non-intrusive to users.
Google’s not alone in working on ad experiences for VR. To highlight a few: Airpush’s VirtualSky network features 5-10 second, 360 degree ads that play when users launch VR content. Outlyer Technologies launched a platform for ads last year that enables advertisers to serve interactive content in standard IAB ad formats in any mobile browser. Another LA-based startup, Immersv launched a platform to serve up ads in VR apps in within a VR staging scene like a hunting lodge or movie theater the user can “enter.” Adobe has been working on VR experiences, and Adobe Primetime already supporting several types of ad formats for VR.
The Area 120 team now wants to work with developers on VR formats across Cardboard (on Android and iOS), Daydream and Samsung Gear VR. Those interested in participating in this early phase can apply online.