According to a Business Insider report.
The two gaming giants are reportedly looking to partner with ad tech companies to help game developers create and place the ads, with Business Insider sources expecting Microsoft’s ad program to go live. by the third quarter of 2022 and that of Sony to be launched by the end of the year.
“The idea is to encourage developers to keep making free games,” Business Insider reports, “that have exploded during the pandemic, giving them a way to monetize them.”
So far, Sony and Microsoft have allowed limited forms of advertising, from ads appearing on the consoles’ respective home dashboard screens to those used in video streaming apps.
These new programs would apparently take those efforts to a new level, providing any participating game developer with the tools to sell and place ads in their games however they see fit.
“The goal is for ads to appear as if they’re part of the game,” Business Insider reports, “like digital billboards in sports stadiums. Formats can include ads that offer viewers rewards for watching. advertisements and promotions for in-game items such as avatar skins.”
According to Business Insider, a chunk of ad revenue doesn’t seem to be a priority for either company right now, given concerns about potentially annoying ads for gamers, as well as about securing their customers’ data.
Sony reportedly “considered charging developers and publishers for consumer activity data” on the PlayStation platform, as well as “being strict about vetting ad tech companies” and “ruling out the collection of personal information such as emails or names”.
Microsoft is apparently “more interested in building the Xbox ad network” and has “no immediate plans” to allow advertisers to use consumer data collected from “searches on Bing” and “behavior on its sites and software” to target people on Xbox.