Google announced that its AdSense for Mobile Apps program would start allowing publishers and developers to work with third party ad mediators. The significance of this is that ad mediators provide access to other mobile ad networks to optimize fill, performance and revenue. The other benefit is that it avoids having to work with SDKs from multiple ad networks to access their inventory.
Third party ad mediators include AdWhirl (now owned by Google via AdMob), Nexage, AdMarvel (owned by Opera), among others.
In doing this, Google gets to assert its “openness” even as it creates more gravity and inertia around AdSense for Mobile. It’s a shrewd move by Big G.
DoubleClick Mobile already provides support for multiple ad networks. It’s not entirely clear to me how or whether DoubleClick Mobile integrates with the new third party mediation option — or not.
All these efforts point toward a mobile ad exchange in parallel to the DoubleClick exchange on the PC side. Eventually I believe that Google will offer “integrated” PC and mobile display ad buying, along the lines of what it now offers, in porting PC search campaigns over to mobile with a few clicks.