Computers

Apple patents enforced ad-interaction into OS

Apple patents enforced ad-inte...
Those irked by pop-up ads will not be placated if a recent patent filed by Apple ever sees the light of day
Those irked by pop-up ads will not be placated if a recent patent filed by Apple ever sees the light of day
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Those irked by pop-up ads will not be placated if a recent patent filed by Apple ever sees the light of day
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Those irked by pop-up ads will not be placated if a recent patent filed by Apple ever sees the light of day

Anyone who has spent even a modicum of their time browsing the Internet over the last few years will be aware of how annoying pop-up and embedded ads can be, especially if they involve audio and video and particularly if it’s more difficult than it should be to find the ‘close’ button. Thankfully it doesn’t usually take too long to remove the offending source from our screens, but those who are particularly irked by this form of interruption will not be placated by a recent patent filed by Apple.

According to reports, the tech giant is seeking approval for a system that will effectively "force" the consumer to view an advert that may appear on any product that has a display. The real crunch here is that you’ll be quizzed on the content of the advert, in some form or another, with a wrong answer resulting in the device being "frozen" until such time as you’re willing to actually pay attention.

It gets worse. Since any such system will be embedded into the core of the product, an advert may appear at any time. There’s also talk of a penalty scheme that judges your receptiveness to viewing the adverts by making subsequent tests more difficult if you fail to perform adequately first time around. Typical actions requested might, according to the patent, involve "causing presentation of a page from an advertiser associated with the advertisement; recording a user rating of the advertisement; again presenting the advertisement; sharing the advertisement with another user; initiating a transaction for user purchase of a product that eliminates the presentation of advertisements on the device."

The only real upside to this intrusive new approach is that devices are likely to be offered with substantial discounts (or even free) to help outweigh this obvious inconvenience, though we can’t imagine that this will be enough to persuade the masses. It’s also been mentioned that those who find the process too annoying to live will could pay to have the ads removed, either temporarily or permanently.

Apple has been rather quiet about the patent thus far, though it does seem as though Steve Jobs was fully aware, being the first name on the list of provided inventors.

Of course it’s only a patent application and may never see the light of day, but we’d be very surprised if this sort of thing would ever be welcomed by consumers at a volume that would end up making the company money, never mind the damage it may do to its reputation.

Via NewYorkTImes

18 comments
matthew.rings
Talk about a rotten apple....
Linux OS may just have a chance with odd-ball ideas like this...
ImpureScience
Apple implements this and I\'m outta there...it would likely drive me away from commercial systems altogether and into the arms of Linux.
steven127
Seems odd that computer terrorism could be patented . . .
Risso
Unbelievable, but yet very believable. Corporate extortion at it\'s worst. Apple have long been associated with aggressive marketing where you will never get anything for nothing.
Apple would charge for the air that we breathe if they could get away with it.
But this is a new and rather insidious development and well within Apple\'s capabilities
Dave Andrews
Wow! Can Apple possibly be that stupid? More to the point, can their partner advertisers possibly be that stupid?
Do advertisers REALLY want to \"punish\" viewers for not paying attention to forced ads? Is that REALLY the message they want to send?
I can see it now:
A) Millions of people are forced to watch a Kleenex ad, then punished if they don\'t get the answers correct about the ad.
B) Millions of people never buy Kleenex again.
C) Ten years from now, people no longer ask for a \"Kleenex.\" They ask for a \"Puffs.\" Kleenex no longer exists. They positioned themselves as the enemy via Apple\'s idiotic scheme and paid the price.
This is just an example and I\'m not suggesting that Kleenex would ever subscribe to such a foolish endeavor, I\'m simply showing the likely outcome if they did.
Paul Rompaye
The patent doesn\'t provide for protection of the display against a woman with a large hammer? She could ruin everything!
YukonJack
I\'m not a Mac and that ain\'t very PC!
TheRogue1000
I\'ve been a Mac user from the 128k machine onward. This is the sickest concept I\'ve ever heard. As it is, pop ups show up on my Mac despite the fact I\'ve got pop ups supposedly denied in my preferences. Drives me batty. Could Steve really be so stupid?
nautilus_mr
Could Steve be Out-Gatesing Bill? Very amusing. Realistically though, it\'s important to remember that corporations seek \'defensive\' patents all the time, which are intended just to grab priority on an idea which they may not intend to market -but don\'t want anyone else to market either. Having said that, I\'m certainly not one of those who thinks Apple is the \'kinder, gentler\' corporation -they may well be prepared to pioneer yet another marketing \"innovation\"!
ducati_boy
I\'ve owned a Mac since they were released in 1984. I own and use three at the moment, and my phone is an iphone. I have been a mac evangelist for nearly three decades. If this pathetic idea gets patented and implemented, I will toss each and every one of them.