Hypercasual to take a hit as Google cracks down on intrusive ads


Google has quietly announced a set of new ad guidelines that could have big ramifications for the hypercasual and ad tech markets. 

In a fairly innocuous post in its Policy Centre, Google announced new guidelines designed to “ensure high-quality experiences for users when they are using Google Play apps.”

This means that effective September 30, Google will not allow: 

  • “Full-screen interstitial ads of all formats that show unexpectedly, typically when the user has chosen to do something else”
  • “Ads that appear during gameplay at the beginning of a level or during the beginning of a content segment”
  • “Full-screen video interstitial ads that appear before an app’s loading screen”
  • “Full-screen interstitial ads of all formats that are not closeable after 15 seconds”

The new policies do not apply to incentivised and rewarded ads, or any other type of ad that has been explicitly opted into. 

The tricky bit for Google will be enforcement. With so many hypercasual games hitting stores every day – and even more coming only to Google Play following Apple’s ATT policies – it’s hard to see how Google will police this new policy.

In the same post, Google also outlined new guidelines around impersonating other apps and subscription, again with the aim of improving user experience and trust in the content downloaded from Google Play. You can read more here. 

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