MM Awards

Google experimenting with VR ad unit

David Murphy

Google has begun working on a native, mobile, virtual reality ad format, in an attempt to help developers fund their VR applications. The work is part of Google’s Area 120 internal workshop for experimental ideas.

In a blog post, Google said that developers and users have told the company that they want to avoid disruptive, hard-to-implement ad experiences in VR. With this in mind, its first iteration of the VR ad unit presents users with a cube. By tapping on the cube or gazing at it for a few seconds, the cube opens a video player where the user can watch, and then easily close, the video.

Google said it is working to certain key principles - that VR ad formats should be easy for developers to implement; native to VR; flexible enough to customize; and useful and non-intrusive for users. It added that it is keen to work with the developer community across Cardboard (on Android and iOS), Daydream and Samsung Gear VR. It has created an early-stage SDK and is inviting developers to apply to be part of its early-access program.

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