Applications and Tools, Business in Virtual Worlds

Google’s Lively a Test-Bed for In-Game Advertising?

VentureBeat reports that Google is ramping up its technology to serve up ads in games, perhaps using Lively as a test-bed for an “AdSense for Games” product:

“Google spilled part of its intentions by announcing its virtual world — or more appropriately virtual room. The company launched Lively by Google earlier this month. Lively by Google would be a natural vehicle for Google’s AdSense for Games product, which could insert ads into the rooms of users. In fact, others expect it to be a proving ground.”

And it’s a big market they’re after:

“All of the companies know the potential of the market. Advertisers are turning to in-game ads because it’s one of the only ways to reach young male gamers who have stopped watching TV. The Yankee Group predicts the market will be worth $971.3 million by 2011. Google’s top executives know that search advertising may not last forever, and in-game advertising could become a compelling technology over time as both games and in-game ad technology become more and more engaging. Google would cover its bases by making a small side bet on in-game ads.”

Nothing like a word from our sponsor to maintain that immersive feel:

“Sources close to the matter said that the company has developed an in-game advertising technology that allows it to insert video ads into games. In demos of the technology, a game character can introduce a video ad, saying something like, “And now, a word from our sponsor,” before showing a short video at the end of a sequence in a game. Since testing has been going on for some time, Google could launch the technology fairly quickly, if it so chooses.”

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