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Apple Rumored to Be Considering Launching an Ad Exchange

Apple is planning to launch an ad exchange, according to an anonymous advertising executive who spoke to Business Insider. The site says it heard from "one of the biggest players in online advertising", but could not confirm it -- BI said it talked to other sources who said they had heard nothing about it.

An ad exchange is an online sales platform that allows advertisers to target users through a variety of mechanisms. An Apple exchange could theoretically target particular Apple users based on their location, type of device, buying habits, what apps they own and more. Apple holds a ton of data about the buying habits of its customers, making an Apple ad exchange a potential gold mine for advertisers.
We can't confirm it. And, of course, the ad business is awash with rumors. (And, to give the full context, a couple of other sources we talked to said they'd heard nothing of the kind.)

But ... it's interesting that a bunch of people in the mobile ad business expect, even want, Apple to launch one, perhaps inside iAd, its existing mobile ad network.
Facebook and Twitter have recently announced plans to develop ad exchanges, and companies like Google and Yahoo already have their own.

Bloomberg reported last October that advertising was to be part of a broader push by Apple, in particular with its new iRadio service which is said to be partially funded by advertising:
The advertising initiative is part of broader flexibility Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook is giving the company’s mobile advertising group to lure new business and integrate ads with other Apple services, according to people familiar with the matter.
Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook said at D11 that advertising was not a central business for the company, but Apple wanted to help iOS developers make as much money as possible.

At the beginning of last year, Apple hired former Adobe executive Todd Teresi to head its iAd mobile advertising unit and he now reports directly to Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president for internet software and services.

Top Rated Comments

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18 months ago
If true, this will be the most depressing Apple news since Steve's departure. :(
Please Apple, stick to what you do best; Build Great Computers.
Rating: 10 Votes
18 months ago
So now we are going to emulate Google

Stupidest idea :confused:
Rating: 10 Votes
18 months ago
Not sure I'm big on this targeted advertising, and the flow of consumer data that comes with it. They already know more about me, than I'm comfortable with.
Rating: 9 Votes
18 months ago

Explain why this is front page news worthy?


you must have a template for this post
Rating: 7 Votes
18 months ago

If this means developers are going to be putting even more iAds in their free apps, I won't be buying them anymore.


Wait, what? :p
Rating: 7 Votes
18 months ago
I was only just thinking, that I could do with being bombarded with more advertising. :rolleyes:

Maybe Apple have taken "be more like Google" too literally...
Rating: 6 Votes
18 months ago
This is dumb
Rating: 5 Votes
18 months ago

Do you have a reason why you think it's dumb ? Apple is a business who exist to earn profits. All companies will copy competitors when the competitors have a good idea that helps them earn profits.


Because they are always banging on how respectful they are regarding people's private information. And doing this would be a cheating on their costumers. I personally hate Google for doing that. That's why I dropped my Gmail account.
Rating: 5 Votes
18 months ago

I don't really see why people think this is dumb.

I work for a digital media agency myself (and yes it is a ********* industry, but it pays the bills). Users are going to be served ads no matter what platform we use, be that Android or iOS. None of us like it, but that's something we can't change.

I'd rather be served an ad that's relevant to my interests though than something completely random and unrelated to me...


Lots of (most?) people don't like adverts, and so are going to react negatively to any new advert-related rumours; almost regardless of what it is.

Personally, these targeted adverts have the potential to be more annoying and privacy invading. In the past, I've googled medical issues on my Mac; and later on medically-related Google adverts appeared on pages I was viewing while colleagues were viewing my screen, so it was obvious what I'd been searching for. I'm not TOO secretive about these things, but I'd still like to be the one making decisions of what I divulge, not Google, Apple or anyone else.
Rating: 5 Votes
18 months ago

Apple is a business who exist to earn profits. All companies will copy competitors when the competitors have a good idea that helps them earn profits.


Tim cook said at D11 - “I don’t want copying. It’s a values thing. This is about values at the end of the day.”

I know it was in relation to Samsung, but you cannot have it both ways..., unless your Apple it seems.
Rating: 5 Votes

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