Google makes its money from advertising, we all know that.
It targets our desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones with its oh-so-relevant ads.
But that’s not enough. Not at all actually, according to a filing Google made to the Securities and Exchanges Commission, late in December 2013.
Google justified why it didn’t reveal how much revenue it made from mobile ads because it claimed that what is considered “mobile” is ever changing, given how new, smart, internet-enabled devices are continuously being added to the “internet of things” (ugh..).
Google then goes on to list some of the potential revenue streams it will be targeting users on:
content on refrigerators, car dashboards, thermostats, glasses, and watches, to name just a few possibilities.
You heard it right. If, no – when, Google has its way, you will be advertised to on your fridge, your car dashboard, even your glasses.
Think this scenario:
You wake up in the morning, head to the kitchen, and your fridge senses your presence. “Good morning! Looks like you’re running low on milk. Did you know that Neilson is having a deal on a 4L bag of milk? Tap here to order”.
Or try this one on for size:
You walk in home after a long day at work, and your thermostat greets you. “Welcome back home! The temperature is just how you like it! Looks like you’re coming home very late these days. Maybe it’s time for a vacation? Click here for great deals! “
This second one is more likely to happen, given that Google just purchased the cool thermostat company Nest for $3.2B. Google went ahead and made a very serious pinky swear that it will NOT advertise to consumers on their Nests:
Nest, which we acquired after this filing was made, does not have an ads-based model and has never had any such plans.
Ok, sure. But one has to wonder why the world’s largest advertising firm would buy a company for $3.2 Billion, and then promise to keep its grubby, data-mining hands off the juicy bits of information it can get from it.
So, to recap: ads are cool on your fridge, glasses, car dashboard and watch… but definitely NOT on your home thermostat. Got it.