Facebook has ambitions that go well beyond being just a social network. In fact, the company has designs on becoming a ubiquitous online powerhouse with clout that’s at least on par with Google. Sriram Krishnan, who works on Facebook’s mobile ads platform, now writes that he and his team are “running a small test to explore showing Facebook ads in third-party mobile apps,” which would represent a major expansion of Facebook’s reach in the mobile advertising world.
Wired notes that while Facebook has long wanted to launch a comprehensive online ad network to rival Google’s AdSense, this new project “leapfrogs that idea to create the same kind of network on mobile devices” and will represent the first time that “Facebook is delivering ads directly to mobile apps, as opposed to using someone else’s ad network.”
If Facebook can successfully create its own mobile advertising network, it will be a shot across the bow at Google, whose dominance in the online advertising realm has mostly gone unchallenged. A recent study from eMarketer showed that Google accounts for roughly 53.2% of all mobile ad revenues while Facebook accounts for just 15.8%. It goes without saying that creating its own mobile ad network would likely push Facebook’s share significantly higher.