iAd – Ads on the iPhone 4.0

Jobs spent a good chunk of the event discussing the seventh “tentpole”—a centralized mobile ad network called (as rumored) “iAd.” Developers will have APIs to add support for ads into their apps, and Apple (via its acquisition of Quattro Wireless) will handle all the necessary ad sales.

The ads will help support free apps, and developers will get an “industry standard” 60 percent of ad revenue. Jobs noted that Apple will soon have as many as 100 million mobile devices running iPhone OS in the wild, offering as many as 1 billion advertising opportunities per day. “This is a pretty serious opportunity,” Jobs noted, while saying that a lot of current mobile advertising “just sucks.”

Jobs said that iAd will offer advertisers a way to add the “emotion” that video ads on TV often have, but that Web and mobile advertising currently lacks. That includes building interactive ads using HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript. He then demoed ads that Apple built to show off what iAd could do, including ones for Toy Story 3, Air Jordans, and Target.

Perhaps the best announced feature of iAds, though, is that it doesn’t take you outside of the app you’re using to view the ads. Dismiss the ad whenever you want, and you’re right back where you left off.

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