Mar 4, 2010

Augmented (Hyper)Reality

After seeing my DICE talk, Shane Langnes sent me this cool video.

I find it very thought provoking -- it implies we will have a future where we will have an option to save money by choosing to view ads. I often wonder about this structure. We kind of have it now -- Pay movie channels with no commercials and "free" ones with commercials. But we do not yet have two options with the same brand ... HBO with ads, and HBO without. It may be that there is something in us that does not like to make this choice... I cannot think of a single successful product where you have the choice of paying your way out of having to encounter ads. Can anyone else think of one? 


  1. Pandora's premium model seems to have been a moderate success. It's exactly what you suggest: free radio with ads, or paid radio with no ads.

    In a sense some upscale movie theaters work this way too: the Arclight in Los Angeles has higher ticket prices than other cinemas, but no pre-film commercials.

  2. Spotify in UK/Europe work with this model, free with ads or subscribe for $x a month to get ad free streamed music.

    The ad supported freee version at least is proving hugely popular over here.

  3. There's a twitter client program for blackberrys that (seems) to be successful with this model. the site is below

  4. Not sure how much revenue these places earn from either model, but it seems like a win-win for them. Money by advertising or money by people actually buying your product...

    A couple great apps that do this are..
    1. (started by my friend too!)
    2. Tweetie

  5. People just getting into web design may opt for a free site with ads vs a site with no ads and a monthly fee.

    I can't think of another example offhand. I know there are certain forums out there that are bombarded with advertisements unless you become a paid member but who would pay for a forum?