Google made a significant portion of its money advertising. And now, the company is attempting to ensure that its core business keeps pace with the rapidly changing times. Towards the same, it has announced a brand new product that brings with it, the concept of advertising in VR.
The company today launched a dedicated website for its internal incubator Area 120. The launch was accompanied by yet another project from Area 120, called the Advr. Advr is nothing but a Cube like ad format which allows users to run and video advertisements in a VR setting.
In case you are curious — and wondering if it has any relation with the famous Area 51 — Area 120 isn’t particularly secretive. It is a Google project that came into existence early last year and has the aim of encouraging Google employees to work on their own projects using 20 percent of their time — and hence the name. Employees are encouraged to work on their own projects which can later be taken up by Google as well.
Google certainly didn’t reinvent the wheel with the program. Microsoft for instance, has its Garage that spits out products fairly regularly — if not a very great degree of usefulness. Apple also attempted something similar a few years ago with a program called the Blue Sky.
The workings of Area 120 are pretty interesting. You apply to the program — you have to be a Google employee first — and if your application is accepted, you and a few other teams join classes, each with 15 to 20 teams. Then, for a duration of 6 months, you are paid to work on your own dream project and don’t have to worry about your regular job.
After 6 months, successful teams are retained and continue working on their products while others return to Google. Many of the products developed are reserved for internal use, or for the future. One of the products that did launch and get pretty popular is Uptime. The app allows you to watch YouTube videos with your buddies. So the program is probably doing something right.
As for Advr, the experience is thus: There is a cube at the center of a virtual room and you can get it activated by gazing at it a for a few seconds. The box opens and voila, there is the ad. The company isn’t exactly putting it forward at present — probably due to the fact that VR market is simply not ready at present – however, it now joins the ranks of Adobe and other companies that think there is a future in VR ads.
So if you are a developer, and feel as if VR ads are the next big thing, sign up right now by going here.