Facebook reportedly gearing up for mobile ad network launch

Summary:It's about time Facebook monetizes its hundreds of millions of mobile users, both on and off the site. That could gear it up to take on Google at its own game.

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Facebook is tinkering with its own mobile ad network, according to a report.

First noted by Recode, the 1 billion user-strong company will reveal its new mobile ad network at its F8 developer conference in San Francisco, CA later this month, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter.

In reality, such a move would mean that Facebook could use its vast data banks of information on its users to target ads on and off the social networking site.

In January, Facebook announced a trial of placing ads on other firms' apps. Since then, the social networking giant announced Paper a week later, and the company snapped up WhatsApp less than a month later. The trial was described as "more like a mobile ad network," hinting at more to come. 

According to its fiscal fourth quarter earnings in late January, Facebook has 757 million daily active users, and 556 million mobile daily active users. The social networking giant said just over half of its advertising revenue was mobile, totaling $1.24 billion.

That could be a massive game changer for Facebook, which has long been criticized for failing to actively target mobile users on and off its site. Google already has its AdMob network, and other smaller players like Millennial Media, as Recode notes, along with Twitter, are already ahead of the game.

In other words, if the report proves accurate, Facebook could be giving Google a run for its money.

Facebook will report its fiscal first quarter earnings after market close on Wednesday.

Topics: Networking

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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