"Mobile ads suck" – Appsfire rolls out in-stream ad unit Sashimi

Appsfire is today debuting a new in-stream advertising unit dubbed Sashimi. It’s the second format released since the company's shift in focus from app discovery to mobile ad technologies.

Most advertisements are irritating, but there’s something about mobile ads that make them particularly maddening.

Appsfire wants to change that.

Today the mobile ad-tech company, which holds the strong belief that "mobile ads suck", rolled out a new in-stream advertising unit dubbed Sashimi. It’s the second format released since Appsfire, in a surprise move, decided to shift its business focus from app discovery to native advertising technologies for mobile apps last December.

After Instagram unveiled its in-stream ad formats in October of last year, there's been a lot of talk of the growing role of native advertising in the mobile ad industry. The announcement seemed like a logical next step for the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app but made even more sense after Facebook revealed earlier this year that mobile ads constituted 53% of its total ad revenue in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Appsfire's aim? To improve the mobile ad experience for users, advertisers and publishers at once

In the last couple of months, Appsfire – which has offices in France, Israel and the US – rolled out two other native ad formats named after Japanese food. Sushi, which was released when the company was still concentrating on app discovery, is its own version of full screen mobile ads while ura-maki wants to capture the user's attention without disrupting usage of the app.

Sashimi – the latest ad format that is automatically generated, produced, translated and formatted – promises to be easy-to-adopt, customizable and scalable for advertisers. It can be used for promotion of mobile app installs, app re-engagement as well as in-app product ads.


“What we're not doing (and don’t want to do): editorial content, mobile sites, direct marketing offers/offline coupons/branding. We’re focusing on what represents 90% of the spend of mobile marketing today in the app-to-app transactional market,” the company stated.

Sashimis fit with various feeds of content, including video, social networks and photo apps. The format is currently available on iOS. Appsfire said that availability on Android and HTML5 will be launching "in the coming weeks".

Also tackling this space is San Francisco-based Namo Media, founded by a former Googler and backed by Google Ventures, which offers a similar in-stream native ad solution.

The mobile advertising landscape

There's a reason why mobile ad startups continue to pop up... Not only does this space have plenty of room to improve, the mobile advertising market is also growing steadily.

According to a Gartner report released earlier this year, global mobile ad spending is expected to reach $18 billion this year and forecast to be worth $41.9 billion by 2017. While the North American market has the strongest focus and investment in mobile advertising, Western Europe is at a slightly slower scale but is expected to remain similar to North America’s during the forecast period (until 2017).

Additionally, a recently published Eurapp report focusing on the European app economy estimated that, in 2013, EU spending (including user spending and advertising) totalled 6.1 billion euros (about $8.3 billion), constituting 30% of the global total. By 2018, this number is expected to climb to 18.7 billion euros (about $25.3 billion).

Featured image credit: Marcelo_Krelling / Shutterstock

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