Microsoft patents emotional state-based ad engine
13 June 2012
Microsoft has filed a patent for an ad delivery system that tracks the body language of consumers.
The technology gauges people’s emotional states through a combination of facial expressions, body movements and speech patterns as well as information it gathers from search queries, emails, instant messages and use of online games.
From the patent application, examples include showing users who seem happy ads for holiday packages and consumer electronics while users who seem less upbeat will have ads for weight-loss or self-help products delivered to them.
The application noted this ad technology is not tied to a specific device, meaning it could cover smartphones, PCs and gaming devices. The body language tracking is possible through the software company’s Kinect device which is compatible with the Xbox 360 and PCs.
The patent application was filed in 2010 and made public last week. No plans to roll out the technology have been announced.
According to a recent report from PricewaterCoopers
, video game advertising in the UK is set to grow rapidly over the next four years but will still only make up 1% of the country’s total advertising market. Other developments in video game advertising include Sony’s recent patent that allows for a game being played to be automatically paused to make way for the delivery of an ad.
The idea of platforms spanning multiple devices and users moving between different screens is something Microsoft has been experimenting with and was discussed in M&M Global’s Q1 media council featuring Microsoft Advertising EMEA vice-president Laurent Delaporte
. Microsoft recently unveiled its “smart glass” technology at gaming exhibition E3 that allows a tablet or smartphone to act as a second screen with video or gaming content displayed on an Xbox 360.
David Hing, London