A vision of mobile advertising in 2020 (PDF, 8Mb). Now I’m no expert, but I can immediately spot something missing from this new report — it doesn’t mention sophisticated mobile ad-blocking software, able to silently block ads en-masse while still accessing content. In Firefox, for instance, I currently use AdBlock Plus, Flashblock, and YouTube Comments Snob — and together they do a fairly effective and seamless insulation job. Similar solutions exist for removing TV ads, or so I’m told by someone who watched X Factor after the broadcast with all the breaks taken out.

Assuming we’re heading for a less “walled garden” type of mobile experience by 2020, then sophisticated ad-blocking software will surely be developed for mobile hand-helds, possibly even in collaboration with the advertisers. By sophisticated I mean things like plug-in “money off” filters for your ad-blocker — only show me an ad if: i) it’s it among the product types I buy, and ii) it has a “money off” code/coupon that gives me 20 per cent or more off the normal price, and iii) it’s not a product that ‘locks me in’ by requiring I own a particular bit of hardware to run it (e.g.: air-fresheners refills that only ‘fit’ one manufacturer’s dispersal device). I suspect the ad blockers and the advertisers will end up working together when they realise that this sort of plug-in filtering allows better targeting and is what consumers want.

The report also talks of in-car screen-based advertising, driven by the potential convergence of the mobile and the satnav — but then I’d also expect that in-car visual ads will likely be banned while driving, and perhaps even (as an anti-distraction security measure) for five minutes after parking in an unfamiliar area.