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First ads for Apple Watch: TapSense announces geotargeted and Apple Pay-integrated ads

First ads for Apple Watch: TapSense announces geotargeted and Apple Pay-integrated ads

Mobile ad network Tapsense has announced the first programmatic ad platform for Apple’s as-yet-unreleased Apple Watch, showcasing a full-screen Starbucks ad on the wrist-worn wearable.

Cue the bandwagon … or cue the future?

The new platform brings a brand-new ad format, hyper-local targeting, and — of course — Apple Pay together for a very personal, very local, and very immediate advertising/marketing/sales gestalt that will potentially see you getting in-store or near-store notifications, providing the ability for you to interact with them and learn more, and actually consummate a purchase, all via that chunk of plastic and metal on your wrist.

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Plus the big dongle that your smartphone has now become, of course.

Apple Watch

Apple Watch

“Wearables and Internet of Things (IoT) are the next frontiers in the mobile revolution,” TapSense CEO Ash Kumar said on the company’s blog. “We are excited to announce industry’s first programmatic ad platform for Apple Watch developers and brands.”

“Apple Watch has the potential to be a category disruptor similar to iPod or iPhone and we believe that it provides great opportunities for brands and developers to deliver engaging experiences to consumers,” he added.

The new ad format will incorporate full-screen images, watch faces, and glances, TapSense says, and utilize the GPS on your connected iPhone to get geo-targeted ads. They’ll incorporate coupons that can be redeemed right off your wrist via Apple Pay, something that TapSense says is both easier for consumers and better for retailers, as it offers direct, immediate tracking of campaign success.

The company is also releasing an SDK for mobile developers who are building apps for Apple Watch, allowing them to integrated the ad platform into their apps and allowing them to monetize via this new form of mobile ads.

TapSense has a history of being a quick mover, having announced support for Facebook’s mobile ad platform the day after it was announced. And Kumar has previously signalled his interest in the Apple Watch platform, calling the product a game-changer and disrupter that has the potential to enable new services and change how we think about wearable technology.

Time will tell if Apple’s string of magic from the iPod to the iPhone to the iPad will continue with Apple Watch, and if success there will enable innovative new mobile marketing experiences such as this in the ever-changing mobile ad space.

One thing I will say:

For an Apple Watch unbeliever, this is one of the first things I’ve seen that has made me sit up and take notice, and think I might like the experience it would enable. And for an ad network to make that connection for me is, to put it mildly, a bit of a shock.

Apple designs and markets consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. The company’s best-known hardware products include the Macintosh line of computers, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. Apple software includes t… read more »

TapSense is the leading independent mobile advertising exchange, and has been featured in publications including Forbes, Bloomberg, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, GigaOM,, MediaPost, Entrepreneur and AdExchanger. Founded in 2011 and … read more »

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