The overwhelming majority of mobile podcast listening is done on an iPhone, most of it on Apple’s own Podcasts app, which is why it’s no wonder Apple would be interested in figuring out a way to monetize the service if it can.
In a patent application published today, Apple describes how in the future it could interrupt podcasts with targeted personalized advertisements, by way of Apple’s iAd platform.
The ads could take various forms — including video, interactive or audio — although the latter would surely work best for podcasts, since there is no guarantee that users are going to be looking at the screen of their iDevice when the ads in question play.
The selected, constantly-updated ads could be targeted to users based on a number of different metrics, such as iTunes account info, your chosen type of Apple device, location, or time. While Apple doesn’t have the mass of personalized data enjoyed by a company like Google, a combination of these would surely be enough to provide appropriately-chosen ads.
As with monetizing YouTube videos, including ads on podcasts would also be incentivized for podcast creators through the use of micropayments.
Will this happen? I’d bet on the answer being no, given how outspoken Apple has been about user privacy. With that said, this is the second advertizing patent Apple has been awarded lately — with the first being a way to target ads based on the bank balance of device owners.
Having seen how much money ads can bring in for Google, maybe Apple’s just covering its bases for a possible future in which the iPhone’s not the money-printing juggernaut it currently is.
Via: Apple Insider