Over the last few years, we've seen Alphabet/Google (GOOGL) , Facebook (FB) and others put a lot of effort into creating text and photo-based ad formats optimized for smartphones. Recognizing that a 5-inch touchscreen device that's with a user at all times has different strengths and weaknesses as an advertising medium than desktops and notebooks, Google/Facebook launched things such as app install ads, search ads with expanded text, local business ads that are targeted based on a user's location and shopping ads featuring listings that a user can swipe through.
In recent months, Internet giants have begun realizing that video content (including ads) needs to be optimized for mobile viewing as well. In many cases, there could be a sizable payoff as mobile video traffic continues swelling.
On Wednesday, Netflix (NFLX) exec Neil Hunt said his company is thinking of providing mobile-specific cuts of its original movies and shows. According to The Verge, Netflix's goal would be to "create a version of [its] content with scenes or shots that are more easily visible or immersive on a mobile phone, since certain shots can be hard to see or can appear diminished on a relatively small phone screen."
Hunt suggested Netflix's expansion into dozens of international markets, including Asian markets where a majority of its viewing takes place on mobile devices, is influencing its thinking. Likewise, Netflix's launches within markets where high-speed mobile connections can be limited and/or expensive contributed to its recent decision to start making some content available for download/offline viewing on its iOS and Android apps.
Meanwhile, Google's YouTube, which is filled to the brim with mobile-friendly short-form videos, announced last month it's killing off its unskippable 30-second video ad format, which wasn't a good fit for the shorter attention spans many smartphone users have. Instead, YouTube will continue supporting shorter unskippable ads, including the 6-second Bumper ads (launched last spring) it has argued are ideal for improving an advertiser's mobile reach.
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