John P. Mello Jr.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Google, on Tuesday, was awarded a patent for “advertising based on environmental conditions.” In other words, Google has patented the technique of using environmental factors gathered through a device’s sensors to target ads at users.
“When determining what ads to serve to end users, the environmental factors can be used independently or in combination with matching of keywords associated with the advertisements and keywords in user search queries,” the patent reads.
“A web browser or search engine located at the user’s site may obtain information on the environment (e.g., temperature, humidity, light, sound, air composition) from sensors. Advertisers may specify that the ads are shown to users whose environmental conditions meet certain criteria.”
So Google can now deliver targeted ads to users based on their surrounding environment. For example, the patent notes, temperature information gathered by a phone’s sensors can be used to flash ads for air conditioners (if temperatures exceed a certain thresholds), or winter coats (if the temperatures fall below a certain benchmark).
Full story here.