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Week in Review: Google to Block Flash Ads, Apple Allows iPhone Ad Blocking, Facebook Focuses on Emerging Markets

Harriet Kingaby  12 June, 2015

In this week’s Week in Review: ad blocking on iPhones, Facebook focuses on emerging markets and report highlights lack of women in digital. For a weekly summary of industry news and other VAN interviews and videos, sign up to the weekly Video Round-Up.

Google to Block Flash Ads in Chrome

Google will soon block Flash content – including ads – on webpages. Any Flash content that isn’t relevant to the webpage will be blocked, which is likely to have a major effect on autoplay video ads running in Flash. As VAN recently reported, a majority of video ads mare currently served into MPUs. Users will have the opportunity activate the Flash content should they wish to access it. Google didn’t mention advertising in their blog post and said the move to was aimed at saving power on Chrome users’ laptops.

Apple to Allow iPhone Users to Block Ads
The latest software update for Apple’s iPhone will let users block ads from appearing on the device. The updated web browser includes developer support to make cookies, images, scripts and other unwanted content disappear. Users can simply install an app with the right extensions to rid themselves of ads.

Comcast Buys Visible World

Comcast has bought Visible World, a specialist in TV ad targeting, for an undisclosed amount. Earlier this year, Comcast also acquired Freewheel, a video ad tech company focused on the premium/broadcaster end of the market.

Facebook Increasing Ad Spend in Emerging Markets Following Success by Coke and Nestle

Facebook is increasing efforts to secure ad spend from brands and agencies in emerging markets according to the first update from the company’s Creative Accelerator program. As more than 70 per cent of Facebook’s revenue is now mobile, the company wants to optimise its advertising offering in markets where mobile phones are most used.

Northern Digital Agencies Lack Female Management
Out of 150 digital businesses in the North of England just 18 are managed by women, according to a survey conducted by recruitment firm The Candidate. Nearly twice as many men are currently working in the sector than women.


TV Still Most Powerful Channel for Driving Business
Television advertising effectiveness has not changed, according to a commissioned report by MarketShare. The report found that TV had the highest relative efficiency in achieving KPIs such as sales, had maintained its effectiveness over the most recent five years and that premium content outperformed short form.


Cool iAd Response, but Good News for Apple TV
Publishers are willing to give Apple their articles for the new Flipboard-style News app that comes as part of the new iOS 9 update later this year. However, according to The Drum, they are reluctant to disclose plans on how they will monetise it, particularly through the iAd mobile advertising platform.

Apple TV is the dominant device for watching television, according to the latest Adobe Digital Index. Apple’s streaming box has doubled its viewing share for subscription-based streaming services in the last quarter. The report also found increased ad viewing on mobile devices.

Twitter Updates Targeting
Twitter has added targeting capabilities for mobile app marketers. Installed app targeting hopes to help advertisers reach users based on the types of apps already installed on their devices.

Long-Form Video Gets Attention on Mobile
Mobile screens are regularly being used for streaming longer-form video, according to Mobile Video Usage: A Global Perspective from the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Over a third of total respondents said they watch videos that are five minutes or longer on their phones daily or more frequently. Movies and full-length television show episodes are also viewed by audiences on mobile devices, with Chinese viewers being the most likely to do so.

Fears Lack of Premium Inventory Inhibits Video Ad Spend
Both sell-side media companies and buy-side advertisers agree that lack of premium inventory hold back video’s growth, according to Forrester and Teads. However, 70 percent of agencies and 77 percent of advertisers surveyed expect video budgets to jump in the next two years.

Dailymotion Exchange Announces Integration with Doubleclick 
Dailymotion Exchange has announced that it is commissioning an OpenRTB installation with Google’s DoubleClick Bid Manager DSP instead of creating a premium private video Dailymotion market. DoubleClick Bid Manager partners now have access to the DMX video inventory in over 180 countries.

Vodafone and Liberty Global in Asset-Swap Talks
Vodafone Group has confirmed that it is in early-stage discussions with Liberty Global over an exchange of assets. Virgin Media was acquired by Liberty Global in February 2013 and is seen as a prime target for Vodafone as it attempts to develop a quad-play offering better to compete with BT and Sky.

Facebook Scraps Satellite Constellation Plan
Non-announced ‘plans’ for Facebook to launch a constellation of mini-satellites, or one $500 million super-satellite, have been dropped according to Business Insider. The scheme, mooted six months ago, was going to provide low-cost internet services for the developing world.

DISH Network/T-Mobile Merger Talks Rumoured
There are unconfirmed reports that DISH Network is in merger talks with T-Mobile according to The Wall Street Journal.

BT UHD Service “To Impact Sky and Virgin”
Sky is set to lose the TV innovation lead to BT for the first time in over 20 years, following the telco’s announcement of a Ultra-HD sports channel launch according to Connected Home Devices. The report also found that three percent of all TV households homes will own a UHD TV by the end of 2015, rising to 8 per cent by the end of 2016, and over 40 per cent by 2020.

TeliaSonera and Spotify Expand Partnership
TeliaSonera is investing in a 1.4 per cent stake in Spotify. Both companies are also committing resources, staff and other assets to improve areas such as media distribution, customer insights, data analytics and advertising.

Amazon Top US Digital Media Streamer
Amazon has quickly established itself at the top of the rankings in the US, despite only launching its Fire TV streaming box and stick in 2013. The company took a 30 percent share of shipments in Q1 2015 according to Strategy Analytics’ Connected Home Devices.

Vimeo Partners with Fullscreen to Expand Video On Demand Library
Vimeo has partnered with Fullscreen, bringing content to Vimeo from the newly created Fullscreen Films. In addition, Vimeo this week announced a series of music-themed titles coming exclusively to Vimeo on Demand, on subjects like Kurt Cobain, Wilco, and Pentatonix.

UK Pay-TV Cancellations Could Double
Findings from Liberum’s consumer survey suggest that the number of UK consumers planning to cancel their pay-TV subscription has doubled in the past six months.

Pay-TV Households Top 1bn
About 455 million digital homes were added around the world between end-2010 and end-2014, according to a new report from Digital TV Research. Digital TV penetration climbed from 40.5 per cent at end-2010 to 67.2 per cent by end-2014.

51 Percent US Pay-TV Subs Want Unlimited DVR Storage
In the US, 51 percent of pay-TV subscribers are very interested in having unlimited space to store DVR recordings, indicating strong consumer demand for cloud-based DVR services. The findings come from research from Parks Associates.

Canada TV Growth Driven by Sports, Advertising Suffers
In 2014, revenues from Canadian specialty, pay, pay-per-view and VoD television increased by 3.1 per cent compared to the previous year, according to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission. This increase is largely attributable to an increase in subscription revenues, which more than compensated for the drop in national advertising revenues.

YuMe launches China Operations
YuMe is opening new offices in Shanghai and Beijing where it has existing partnerships with a number of publishers.

Xiaomi Invests in Online Video Content
Chinese tech company Xiaomi has announced an investment of $1 billion in online video content to support its Smart TV products.

This Week on VAN:

AppNexus Launches Video Advertising at a ’Fraction of the Prevailing Market Rate’, read more on VAN

Major Gaps Between Buy and Sell-Side Perceptions of What Defines Premium Video, read more on VAN

Google’s Neal Mohan Reportedly Heading to Dropbox, read more on VAN

Ad of the Week, #Hootchat with Shia LeBeouf

Hootsuite had fun with Shia Labeouf’s reputation of being unpredictable this week. The video was billed as being social media tips from the actor, but things quickly get strange.

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