Amobee Makes Its Ads 'Pulse' In 3D

Mobile ad firm Amobee just released some interesting technology that makes mobile ads look, feel and behave a lot like the old 3D graphics demos of old on PCs. Some of you may recall the days when companies like ATI and nVidia tried to one-up themselves each year with PC graphics cards that brought CGI-like 3D effects to the desktop. Gamers gushed over the reflected images on rippling water and the hyper-realistic physics of countless 3D demos that we watched in awe. Oh, those were the days of pointless tech porn.

This era came to mind when Amobee was walking me through its latest ad platform dubbed Pulse 3D. An example here will bring you back to the good old days of 3D demos. But Amobee is putting the tech to good use in making its new ad units look and feel like console-quality game content. In the demo of a recent BMW ad I saw that a photo-realistic coupe can be twisted and turned with the drag of a finger, and even exploded into its component parts.

These kinds of 3D have been used for eons, of course, but there is something to be said for the level of detail and realism and its way of engaging you even deeper into the object at hand. A Lumia 920 ad for Nokia allows the phone image to move and twist in response to the accelerometer and gyroscope of the phone. There is a showcase here.



The detail also has a practical aspect in that it can deliver back data on how users are spending time and interacting with a host of different views and items in the ad. The richer and deeper the ad, the more people are liable to explore. Their actions begin telling you how ever more minute aspects of a product are resonating with the consumer.

The 3D and touch platforms also help move us away from a page mentality to information architecture. For the last 20 years of Web design, we generally have been anchored to a previous print paradigm when the tools have been there much of the time to imagine something else. Again, gaming may be in the lead here in having us think more in terms of pop-up information and moving laterally across and within 3D spaces rather than drilling down and burrowing back up a stack of pages.

There is a cool tech trick at work here. All the rendering is done in real-time and it represents a hybrid of HTML5 and native device technology. Amobee does all the heavy lifting in ensuring the experience can work across devices and app and mobile Web platforms.

The challenge of even the coolest ad design tech, of course, is getting people into the experience in the first place. The iAd unit has always suffered from the disconnect between the lure (tiny banner ad) and the payoff (app-like ad experience). The full-page interstitial, I guess, is one ham-handed way to attract people into a mobile or tablet ad unit. If ads are going to offer the depth and richness of apps, the tech is nice. But we need to begin thinking about how and why people engage a brand’s content on a device in the first place. 

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