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What Developers Think About Apple's iAd 263

Nemilar writes "It's been about a week since Apple rolled out its new advertising platform, and developers of iPhone apps are watching the earliest returns to see how much money they can expect to make from these ads. One developer reported Thursday that he earned $1,400 in one day for his flashlight app. The amount iAds pay is 'a high number when you get it, but you don't get it very often,' said Dave Yonamine, the director of marketing at MobilityWare. The article discusses revenue potential in relation to the only other mobile ads platform, AdMob for Android, and claims that iAd paid as much as $148 for the same number of ads as $1 on AdMob; but this extreme ratio is likely to erode as the novelty wears off."
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What Developers Think About Apple's iAd

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  • Re:iAD (Score:5, Insightful)

    by node_chomsky ( 1830014 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @08:51AM (#32865834)
    I hate advertising so much I have stopped watching live television. However, IAd is no more intrusive than any other form of mobile advertising you might have encountered in the past (i.e. browsing nearly any website). Additionally, this is a service that is packaged with mostly free software that you download voluntarily, so it's only as intrusive as you allow it to be.
  • Re:iAD (Score:5, Insightful)

    by clang_jangle ( 975789 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @08:53AM (#32865840) Journal
    WTF are you talking about? There is certainly adware that runs on windows as well as on Mac OS. It's just a normal part of the [proprietary] software ecosystem, like shareware or trialware. Usually the advantage of adware is you can use the software while enduring the ad or pay money for the ad-free version.

    This business of Apple being constantly praised uncritically or damned irrationally on slashdot is getting really old. Steve Jobs is neither your saviour nor the antichrist, and iAd is just a way for developers to offer an ad-sponsored software option.
  • by Tisha_AH ( 600987 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @08:59AM (#32865864) Journal

    This is just great. Now that AT&T is limiting the full capabilities of the iPhone/ iPad with data restrictions you get to "pay" for the bandwidth to download useless iAds.

    They get you coming and going.

  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @09:09AM (#32865900) Homepage

    Especially when Unlimited service through AT&T is cancelled. Are the advertisers prepared to subsidize the AT&T bill for these users who are bombarded with ads?

  • Re:iAD (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 11, 2010 @09:13AM (#32865910)

    You imply that only Apple 'fanatics' and their iHardware are using ads which is of course not true. You also claim $600 dollar costs for hardware when it costs you $199. You also mentioned MS not doing ads, when NONE of them (Apple, MS, or Android) puts ads into their OS, the developers do in their 3rd party apps. Your post is simple meme trolling, nothing more.

    Why is this marked as flamebait? It seems like a reasonable expression of a reasonable viewpoint

  • by Tuzanor ( 125152 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @09:36AM (#32866018) Homepage
    So then don't use the free app and stop whining about not getting something for nothing.
  • by Overzeetop ( 214511 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @09:42AM (#32866066) Journal

    Exactly the point. This gets more "free" apps on the store while getting the developers (and apple, of course) some cash. Personally, I'm fine with it. I already pay for the best apps I use, but always look for free "utility" apps to use once or twice a year. As I understand it, the ad will be a small click-though type, where the banner is a low bandwidth type which will load some more advanced (and b/w intensive) ad on clicking.

  • Flashlight ads? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by nickspoon ( 1070240 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @09:48AM (#32866100)
    I don't know about you, but I wouldn't buy a flashlight app that requires a data connection. :/
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 11, 2010 @10:06AM (#32866218)

    If you do not like it, please develop your own platform and release it to us with the restrictions you don't like removed. We'll be waiting.

    Oh, what, you don't have the expertise, time and money to donate to this project so it will be out soon? That's right, time and expertise are not free!

    If you truly feel that strongly, please put your time where your mouth is and get to work instead of complaining here.

  • Re:iAD (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ahankinson ( 1249646 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @10:14AM (#32866280)

    One might argue that Steve Jobs is no more a threat to "free software" than Richard Stallman. Stallman believes that the GPL is superior to, say, the BSD or MIT licenses; a stance that is primarily idealogical. The GPL is not as free as the BSD license, but that's OK. Some people like it better that way. You have the choice. If you look at it from a certain, limited point of view, the GPL can be seen as the "iPhone" of the open source licenses in that it restricts what you can, and cannot do, with the software.

    If you take everything coming from Apple as coming from Steve Jobs himself, then we could just as easily point to liberally-licensed projects like WebKit (LGPL), LLVM (NCSA License) and CLANG (BSD), libdispatch (Apache) or launchd (Apache) as arguments against your assertion that Jobs is against free software. Even the Apple Public Source License is certified by the FSF [] as a true Open Source license.

  • Re:Marketing move (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Rockoon ( 1252108 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @10:43AM (#32866468)

    The coding part of application development is less than 5% of a full application development cycle.

    umm.. its a flashlight app

  • by yabos ( 719499 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @10:48AM (#32866498)
    Yeah, it's called don't use an app with ads if you don't want to see ads. Free apps that are ad supported are not new and the way to block it is to not download or use the app.
  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by toriver ( 11308 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @11:15AM (#32866696)

    Why would you want to distribute the source with the app? There is no real mechanism for extracting it.

    Instead you could have a link to where the user can download it from the web.

  • Re:iAD (Score:4, Insightful)

    by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @11:20AM (#32866728)

    He is a threat to free software. Also he seems like a major jerk.

    In free do you mean open source or free as in no cost? You do realize that Apple contributes to many open source projects right? In fact you can get the backbone of OS X BSD system as Darwin. Chrome wouldn't exist without WebKit. LLVM, CalDAV, CUPS, etc.

    He banned code generation just because flash made him cry like a baby. Someone as petty as that with too much power over your computing experience is dangerous.... He wants to make a walled garden where you will only run Steve Job approved software. When someone leaks an apple secret or jail breaks their device and posts steps on how to do it, he wants to call in the sharks with frikken lasers (lawyers).

    You have to use the walled garden and their ecosystem when it comes to the iPhone/iPad devices. For Mac computers there isn't a walled garden. The walled garden exists because Apple is making products for the average consumer and not the average geek.

    Even Bill Gates/Steve Balmer are not that bad.

    That's laughable. Apple doesn't care what you do with any other system. They exercise tight control over their own ecosystem. The difference between them and MS is that MS reached out with their monopoly to harm competitors and partners as well as potential competitors in markets that they may or may not have had any products.

    If he was a little more open, I would not be debating an iPad, I would have bought one already. Allowing him to form the future of computing would be dangerous, but one day things like the iPad or even a cell phone will be the future of computing....

    Apple has already stated the reasons that the devices are closed. If you don't like it, you don't have to buy their products. In fact you are open to buy competing free and open devices like Android, Palm, HP's Slate (if it ever comes to market). Apple won't stop you.

  • Re:iAD (Score:4, Insightful)

    by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @11:27AM (#32866776)

    The walled garden approach of the iphone/iPad sets a bad precedent. But anyway they are still nice devices. If they don't become the absolute future, then it is no big deal, but if everyone gets an iPad/iPhone and the alternatives go away, then we have a problem...

    The walled garden existed before Apple. Many consumer devices are still walled gardens. I remember when Nintendo tightly controlled their games on the original NES. Ever wonder why none of the games didn't have the NES stamp of approval? The didn't approve any games they didn't like even if they were compatible. Many think that Verizon is some sort of savior with the Droid but I was on Verizon where they deliberately crippled phones so that you had to pay extra for capabilities built into the phone.

  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by frdmfghtr ( 603968 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @11:31AM (#32866804)

    iAds are not on the Web, they're in native apps. So it's not Adblock Plus that is protecting you, but rather your N900's complete lack of software.

    The poster was referring to ads on websites, not in apps, by pointing out Adblock Plus on his/her N900.

  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @11:41AM (#32866858)

    Yeah, it's kind of funny that you get bombed with advertisement when just using your phone that you paid for up to $600 (monthly payments count up too), and still some Apple fanatics twist it as being somehow good and great.

    Where is this $600 that you speak of? That's nowhere near what I paid for my iPhone. And before you complain about having to pay for a data plan, you seem to gloss over some basic facts.

    1. The iPhone is a smartphone. It requires a dataplan as does other smartphones like Blackberries, Androids, Windows Mobile, etc.
    2. All telcos will charge you something for a data plan for a smart phone. Sprint charges less and rolls it into their normal plan. Verizon and AT&T charges are separate.
      1. This is also a mobile device where every little thing matters. Imagine the outcry if Microsoft started displaying popup ads while you are using the computer.

        Have you used a computer in the last 10 years? Adware/malware is everywhere on the PC. MS isn't directly responsible for them but malware often exploits security holes in Windows. Most free commercial applications whether on the computer or on your mobile device is supported by ads. If you don't like the Ads, you can choose to pay for another version or not use the App.

  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @12:09PM (#32867058)

    Another great example is admob. Steve has decreed that he does not like people getting sales numbers on his iPhone, so only advertisers who collect data he has approved will be permitted to exist. Then he invented his own platform. This is dangerous because previously people were using admob and he suddenly decided nope, I am changing the rules, you have to work my way. Then he invented a competitor which is not subject to the same rules. It gives him an unfair advantage. This is no big deal right now, because you are free to chose android. But if apple becomes the only game in town, then it is a problem.

    You still can use AdMob. The change is that AdMob nor any ad service collect data on the user. That's different than a total ban. Steve Jobs did not invent his own platform. Apple bought another company to handle it. Yes it gives him an unfair advantage. But Apple is doing with ads what it did with music. You can get music online without using iTunes. It's not integrated though.

    If you are a company and your only products are apps in Steve's store, then you have to ensure you don't piss him off. But still you'd have to disclose to your investors the huge risks of Steve changing his mind, deciding to invent a competitor to you not subject to the same restrictions. Or all out, you spend a year making an app, Steve decides to build it into the iPhone and ban any apps doing the same thing because it is duplicating the functionality....

    Apple hasn't been as consistent with it's approval policies as many would like. But Steve does not personally approve any apps and the this hypothetical you've written doesn't align with reality.

    As a business that is very risky. It's just like the problem with investing in some foreign countries. When governments keep changing the laws/rules often less people will invest there. It is important to find places that offer consistent laws/processes. It's no different then Venezuela where Chavez suddenly decides to nationalize your business. Then he keeps jacking up the prices...

    That's always a risk with any software business with any platform. MS decides to "fix" a bug in their latest patch that breaks your Windows app. You'll have to release an update. Even in open source, a change could break your application as well.

  • by Duradin ( 1261418 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @12:12PM (#32867080)

    The same thing that restricted developers from putting ads in their paid-for apps before iAd.

  • Re:iAD (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mistashizzle ( 1341785 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @12:25PM (#32867200)
    You people seem to think that if there weren't iAds there wouldn't be ads at all. Developers are going to try and make money. There were ads in the past and there would have been ads in the future even if Apple had not come out with their own. If you are concerned about your data then don't click on them and it wont be any more data usage than any other ad out there.
  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by insertwackynamehere ( 891357 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @01:07PM (#32867478) Journal

    "If the iPad was the only computing platform" is not an argument. That changes the playing field completely. Since there IS competition in the computing platform world, the iPad is not a threat to freedom no matter how locked down it is.

  • Re:iAD (Score:4, Insightful)

    by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) * on Sunday July 11, 2010 @04:45PM (#32868980) Journal

    At least the ads are limited in real estate and they dont do much of anything unless you opt to click on them.

    For now.

    Let's revisit this situation in 12 months and see how many ads show up on smart phones, and how intrusive they are.

    You would think that >$50/month for two years is payment enough for the use of a smart phone, but you would be wrong. Let's see how many really useful apps become "free" because of ads. Or maybe they'll be free for a limited time and then the prices will creep up again for the "premium" apps. There's only one direction this train goes: toward more advertising. Toward more obnoxious advertising as companies compete for attention.

  • Re:iAD (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 11, 2010 @06:24PM (#32869626)

    In free do you mean open source or free as in no cost? You do realize that Apple contributes to many open source projects right? In fact you can get the backbone of OS X BSD system as Darwin. Chrome wouldn't exist without WebKit. LLVM, CalDAV, CUPS, etc.

    WebKit is a fork of KHTML (from KDE). In fact, they had some major trouble [] getting the changes Apple made back into KHTML because of Apples typical 'release as late as possible' policy.

    I would say that nowadays most large IT corporations (except MS) contribute to open source projects in some way (look i.e. at the Linux kernel).

    But if you look at the past, Apple mostly took existing open source software and forked it. They exploit OSS to make profit, without returning much value to to the community.

  • iSPAM (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Jackie_Chan_Fan ( 730745 ) on Sunday July 11, 2010 @08:18PM (#32870314)

    Its not iAds, its iSPAM.

  • Re:iAD (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 12, 2010 @05:14AM (#32872652)

    But on the other hand, you could use an iPhone and just not use App Store and get the same deal.

    Or on the other hand you could re-read the parent post- because you're just plain wrong. It specifically said that ad-block on the N900 removes adds from websites. That's all. Nothing about Apps. Just that you can block web adds on the N900.

    Remind me again how you do that on the iPhone seeing as you 'can get the same deal'?

  • Re:iAD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Monday July 12, 2010 @07:19PM (#32880740)

    If you bought it on a contract you paid about 3 times that amount. If you terminate early you have to pay a fee for the handset or hand it back.

    And how is that different from any smartphone or telco? Singling out one product because you dislike the manufacturer is rather biased.

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