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Finns look to bring Phorm style stalker ads to UK radio streaming

Hey, your mobile kit is probably tracking you already

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

UTuneMe has invited UK radio stations to sign up to its embedded advertising, promising to deliver targeted audio ads in the same way Google delivers online ones, personalised for the listener.

The idea is that targeted adverts pay better, but while websites have half a dozen companies which will happily drop targeted ads into their content - notably Google, but also Opera and many others - and YoSpace is busy doing the same thing with video, the opportunity to target audio advertising is woefully unexploited, something UTuneMe aims to remedy.

UTuneMe's ads will only be available to listeners are using the UTuneMe mobile app, so more like Opera than Google or Phorm, and users will opt into the scheme during the installation process, after which targeted adverts will start being dropped into the stream.

The UTuneMe app will also collect location data from the handset, enabling ads to be targeted by location as well as enabling demographic and behavioural profiling.

It all sounds quite creepy, but it is far less than Google is already doing for websites, and radio could certainly do with improved revenue. How many listeners are using their phones to listen to streamed radio stations we don't know, but as network coverage improves, the number is likely to rise.

UTuneMe is part funded by the Finnish government though its TEKES programme, which provides match funding for innovative projects, but the company has decided to kick off operations in the UK. The campaign to recruit some radio stations is starting now and the service is slated to be on the air by early next year. ®

Bootnote

Just for perspective, one might note that many if not most kinds of smartphone, phondleslab, fondletop and fondleslab from the major makers track your location - there's no need for a SIM card or GPS, it can be done with nothing more than WiFi - and supply the information to the manufacturer by default. It's a creepy world.

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