Mobile advertising: "The next big wave" and a golden opportunity for RIAs

Eric Schmidt has an interview that was posted today in which he declares that the next big wave in advertising is the mobile internet:Second: The most obvious large space of advertising is the mobile internet. Every German has a mobile phone.

Eric Schmidt has an interview that was posted today in which he declares that the next big wave in advertising is the mobile internet:

Second: The most obvious large space of advertising is the mobile internet. Every German has a mobile phone. Just take the success of the iPhone: It has the first really powerful web browser on a mobile device - and many more are still coming. Nokia has one coming, Blackberry has one and Motorola has one. They are all supposed to be released this year. By these products, the advertising gets more targeted because phones are personal. So targeted ads are possible. And that means the value of the ads will grow. The next big wave in advertising is the mobile internet.

I just got back from a trip to China where I did a bunch of customer visits for Adobe so for me, this interview hit at just the right time. Everyone knows the mobile internet is a big deal, and advertising will play a big part in that. But I think the confluence of mobile devices and advertising is a place where RIAs can really come into stride. Video, customizations, interactive games - all possible on mobile devices with RIAs. People are already spending money to customize their phones - something RIAs are a natural extension of - but they're increasingly doing more sophisticated tasks like gaming and video consumption on their devices.

Having a rich environment on a phone allows advertisers to target not only at a very personal nature (due to the information on the phone) but to do so in a very engaging way. That's key. SMS advertising is annoying and spammy. You have to be more sophisticated and I don't think the search metaphor fits on devices as well as it does in the browser. So you can use video, use interactivity, use games, use the kind of higher-level display advertising that RIAs enable.

That's why this is a big battleground. Microsoft is working with Nokia, Adobe has the open screen project, Google has Android, Sun is working on JavaFX for mobile devices; everyone wants a piece of what will be a lucrative pie. Things are going to get very interesting in the world of mobile RIAs over the next couple of years.