As smartwatches become more popular with users, Juniper Research expects them to become more popular with another group as well: advertisers.

According to the resarch firm, spending on smartwatch ads is expected to rise in the coming years, although even if it does hit the forecast of nearly $70 million by 2019, that’s kind of a tiny drop in the bucket compared with the amount of money spent on advertising for other forms of media.

Still, it raise the question of whether there’s room for any kind of advertising on a 1.6 inch display you wear on your wrist.

android wear

Part of the point of wearables like smartwatches is that they offer information-at-a-glance to save you the time it would take to pull your phone out of your pocket, unlock the screen, and look something up.

Not only can you tell the time by glancing at your smartwatch, but you can also see caller ID for incoming phone calls, details about your latest chat or social media messages, or other notifications.

Sure, you might want to spend a little more time with your watch screen if you’re using it to search the web, order a pizza or even play a game. But generally speaking smartwatches aren’t designed to be used the same way as phones or tablets… and that means that ads which you need to dismiss or wait through before you can use an app could be a lot more annoying on a watch than on a phone.

But maybe advertisers will rise to the challenge and come up with some form of way to communicate messages in novel ways that seem appealing rather than annoying.

Yeah, yeah, I know… why start now? But if I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard someone say they watched the Super Bowl just for the ads, I’d have, well, at least a few nickels. Not everyone hates advertising all the time.

via ZDNet

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13 replies on “Are you ready for ads on your smartwatch?”

  1. For the time being I see ads on smartwatches as a total failure for multiple reasons:
    1) it (potentially) interferes with the functionality due to the limited screen real estate as has been mentioned
    2) bigger battery drain (I remember the article stating that ads in badly programmed apps ate up a HUGE chunk of battery usage)
    3) (for the time being) smartwatches are luxury items which means their owners don’t want ads (can you imagine someone with a $10,000 iwatch with apps popping up?)
    4) related to number 3, many apps with ads are the free versions and I think most people willing to spring for a smartwatch are most likely willing to pay for the apps that interact with/run on their smartwatches to avoid the ads (if they know of this option)

    Personally I would be one of the guys who tosses their smartwatch out the window (if I get one to begin with) if ads started getting in the way… or maybe I’d sell it to some ignorant n00b on ebay or such. Also, any app that decided to push ads to a smartwatch that I were using could potentially lose me as a user. I understand the need of some apps to use ads to support themselves in today’s app ecosystem but it’s always a question of when does it stop being useful/functional/fun to use the app due to the invasiveness of advertisements. This is why I always prefer it if apps have a free ad-supported version plus a paid ad-free version (which is why I bought MX Player Pro despite the free version being an excellent app anyway).

  2. Smart watches, despite the press they get, seem like a pretty fragile technology, and advertising– which is always more invasive than the advertising industry will ever admit– could kill smart watches stone dead.

    The whole point of the technology is quick access to a subset of the data available on a phone. Banners, click-throughs, or anything else that would slow that down could make smart watches a high-class fad. Great for the manufacturers, great for the eventual hackers who will repurpose the stuff, not so great for anyone else.

    1. Yep. I’d throw my Pebble out the window if it came up with some kind of ad while I was driving.

  3. From the “who would have ever seen this coming?” department. I am surprised Amazon isn’t making a smartwatch yet (or maybe I missed it).

  4. that’s why they invented smartwatches …. and let the foolish public even pay a lot for. incl positive bloggers i’d say ….
    “smart watches” … are for “smart money making companies” – never meant for a smart public

  5. No. I do not want to wear advertisements on my wrist. Branding on clothing is bad enough, but a watch cycling through ads is too much.

  6. I can see the car accidents now as people fiddle to close annoying popup ads while driving. Waiting for the ban on use of “smart watches” while behind the wheel. Advertising is not a revenue model but a parasite on society.

Comments are closed.