How Google’s purchase of AdMob impacts the mobile ecosystem

November 11, 2009 – 6:55 pm

By now, most people have probably heard that Google has offered up $750 million of Google stock for mobile ad network AdMob.

I’ve had a lot of discussions recently about how I think the AdMob buyout by Google will impact the mobile ecosystem. I don’t think there will be a “year of mobile” – I think it will continue to be a gradual increase over the next few years.

Almost all technology and advertising media outlets have written an article about the purchase, so I’ll include just a few quotes that I think summarize them. Mobile marketers have taken a lot of heat over the last few years claiming that “this will be the year of mobile” and then things falling flat.

While some people disagree, I think the Google buyout increases the interest in mobile for brands (as if the iPhone phenomenon hadn’t already).

The other change I think we’ll see is a huge increase in innovation in the mobile space. Android is out and growing quickly (and predicted to overtake the iPhone in market share by 2012). Not everything Google comes out with is perfect, but they put enough stuff out there to impact the advertising ecosystem (just look at their search market share: 65%).

Lastly, I think we’ll continue to see consolidation as the mobile industry matures. AOL purchased Third Screen around three years ago and Nokia bought out Enpocket about two years ago. WPP has around 2.5% ownership of JumpTap from January of 2007. There are many mobile companies that I’m sure will be snapped up by either large media companies or technology conglomerates over the next 3-5 years and I think this is only the beginning.

I stumbled upon the following article from ClikZ from the fall of 2007 that was interesting – Nokia Acquires Enpocket to Build Out Mobile Ad Platform

Acquisitions in the mobile advertising arena will likely lead to the four categories of ad inventory, according to Wood. Inventory managed by the carriers, media and entertainment, device or branded inventory, and Internet companies like Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AOL creating advertising platforms. “These four categories of ad inventory will have different propositions for brands, publishers, and interactive agencies will likely create mobile specific media plans which will segment media buying by class of mobile advertising inventory.

Other recent articles and summaries below that highlight some of the discussion topics.

Mediapost: Madison Avenue Backs Google-AdMob Deal

AdMob overall now serves more than 10 billion monthly impressions across 15,000 sites worldwide.

The hefty sum that Google is willing to spend to snap up the leading mobile ad network — launched only three years ago — shows that the long-hyped potential of mobile advertising is finally becoming a reality, they say. While the move is likely to shake up the competitive landscape in the short term, overall, it helps legitimize mobile as an advertising medium.

eMarketer: Big Move: How Google’s Acquisition of AdMob Changes the Mobile Advertising Landscape:

The AdMob acquisition comes at a time of renewed (or perhaps redoubled) marketer enthusiasm for mobile.

Mediapost: Google Eats AdMob: Round Up the Usual Suspects:

Joy Liuzzo, Senior Director of Mobile Research at InsightExpress, echoes my sense that this deal all boils down to what Google really wants to do with AdMob. There is a tremendous opportunity here for great ad targeting from search box data as well as a richer, more monetizable development platform across both iPhone and Android. “Mobile doesn’t need to be validated, it needs a huge infusion of cash to drive development and get over some serious hurdles,” she says. “Money is what Google can provide, and they are getting a nice base — and proven reputation — to build from.”

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