Video ad network YuMe is expanding to mobile, launching software development tools for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch as well as a pair of new mobile ad units.
By adopting its software, publishers and app developers will be able to use YuMe's ACE technology platform to tap into multiple video ad networks, including its own, to run video ads across iOS devices. The system also lets publishers bundle mobile video ad inventory with online inventory for direct ad sales and target specific devices for directly sold campaigns.
The two new in-app ad units from YuMe are designed as high-impact, interactive formats. One dubbed Mobile Connect delivers a full-screen video ad overlaid with icons users can tap to further engage with the brand. Ads can include social icons connecting to their Facebook, Twitter or YouTube page, as well as the App Store, or others that link directly to their Web site, downloadable coupons, or contact information for sales or customer service help.
The other unit -- Mobile Billboard -- is a full-screen banner or rich media ad that launches before a video or game and allows the user to watch video or link to social networking and e-commerce sites. YuMe says both formats provide interaction data such as percentage of video viewed or use of icons to optimize ad creative or media buys.
With its move into mobile, YuMe will be competing with a host of vendors already offering rich media or video ad solutions in the space from Medialets and Crisp Wireless to mobile video ad networks like Transpera and Rhythm NewMedia to JumpTap, which added video to its mobile ad network in June.
But YuMe can leverage the solid base it has built on the Web, where it boasts a network of more than 600 premium publishers including Microsoft, Viacom and NBC and a potential reach of 57% of the U.S. online audience, according to comScore. The company has raised $46 million in funding to date from investors including Accel Partners and Khosla Ventures.
Mobile video, however, is still in its infancy. Research firm eMarketer predicts the U.S. mobile video audience will grow almost 30% this year to 23.9 million, or only 7.7% of the total population and less than 10% of mobile subscribers.
That audience is expected to more than double to 56.7 million in four years, with revenue from direct downloads, subscriptions and ad-supported video projected to climb from $548 million this year to $1.34 billion by 2014.
An earlier version of this story mistakenly referred to Rhythm NewMedia as Rhythm NewNetworks. This has been corrected.