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Advertisers may soon gain a new way to reach users with Apple's iAd service, as the iPhone maker is reportedly poised to make a new full-screen "interstitial" advertising option available later this year.
Apple will make the new units available through its recently-launched real-time ad exchange, according to Advertising Age. If true, the move would mark the first expansion of iAd's in-app advertising inventory since the service's launch in 2010.
Widely deployed on the web, interstitials are designed to appear in between user actions, such as clicking from one article to another on a news site. Some third-party mobile networks such as Google's AdMob have already given app developers the option of including interstitials in mobile apps, but their use on mobile devices is less widespread.
Interstitial advertisements tend to command a premium over more pervasive banner ads because they are displayed automatically, rather than by a tap or click, and command the subject's attention. There is no word on just how much more Apple would ask advertisers to pay, nor is there a definitive timetable for their implementation.
Neeraj Kochar, an executive at ad buyer Magna Global, told the publication that the idea of full-screen interstitial in-app iAds is "compelling," but that advertisers would likely approach the new units with caution. "Advertisers will test into it, potentially as part of bigger deals with Apple," Kochar predicted.