YouTube changed the way advertisement could be watched in 2010 when it introduced a new form of skippable video advertisements, TrueView. As of today, TrueView’s ad-skipping feature is available for users of YouTube’s mobile site.
Surprisingly ,video viewers will sit through and watch ads from beginning to end, whether it’s an overt attempt by an advertiser to create a viral video, or the latest movie trailer. They’re more likely to skip through the ad if it has absolutely nothing to do with the viewer’s interests, however, or if it’s an ad that has been watched once before. In either ad viewing scenarios, the advertisers are only charged if the ads are watched for at the least thirty seconds, or to completion for an ad that is shorter than thirty seconds. Users are given the option to skip the ad after five seconds of the ad playing.
“Giving viewers choice over ads they watch has led to a better, more engaged viewing experience, benefiting the entire YouTube community of users, advertisers, and content creators,” Phil Farhi, group product manager of YouTube, said in a statement.
YouTube’s mobile platform is critical to its strategy, as more consumers carry multiple devices on the go. According to YouTube, more than 20 percent of global YouTube views come from mobile devices. And based on their latest figures, YouTube is available on more than 350 million devices. In the latest Nielsen figures measuring the top online video destinations, YouTube topped the charts with over 136 million unique viewers and over 16.5 billion total streams in May 2012 alone.
“We’ve only just begun testing TrueView on mobile, but early indications are that people engage with these ads in the same way as they do on desktop,” Farhi said. “This is just the start — we’ll continue to innovate to bring the best of video to the best of mobile”
In a move that may affect YouTube’s mobile views, Apple recently decided to not renew its licensing contract for the native YouTube app, which will be excluded from its forthcoming iOS 6 mobile operating system. Instead, users will be required to download YouTube from the iTunes store, or simply browse YouTube through its mobile site. While this will undoubtedly affect the number of views garnered from mobile devices, it will also allow YouTube to monetize videos on its new iOS app, which was not possible on the native iOS app.