Roku Wants to Place Ads on Your TV When You Pause Your Game

A new patent recently filed by the TV and streaming device manufacturer roku Hints of a possible future where TVs might show ads when you pause a movie or game.

For Roku, time when the TV is on but users are doing nothing is valuable. The company started renting advertising space popular Roku City screen protector—Visible when your TV is idle— Movies and companies like McDonald’s Barbie. As a technology newsletter low pass He notes that Roku finds this free time and the screen saver so valuable that bans app developers from overriding the screen protector with their own screen protector. But if you plug an Xbox or DVD player into the HDMI port on the Roku TV, you’ll skip the company’s screensaver and other advertising. And so Roku finds a way to not let that happen.

As reported by low pass on April 4 Roku recently filed for a patent For a technology that allows users to insert ads into third-party content, such as an Xbox game or Netflix movie, using an HDMI connection. The patent describes a situation where you check your phone or grab something to eat by pressing pause while playing a video game. At this point, Roku will detect that you have paused the content and display a relevant ad until you unpause the game.

How does Roku’s HDMI advertising technology work, according to the patent?

Roku’s technology isn’t designed to randomly inject ads while you’re playing games or watching movies; He knows that would be going too far and would make people angry. Instead, the patent suggests a variety of ways Roku could detect the user, such as comparing frames when your TV is paused. Actually paused the content. Roku can also use HDMI’s audio feed to search for long moments of silence. The company also suggests using HDMI CEC, a protocol designed to help devices communicate better, to understand when to pause and resume content.

Similarly, Roku’s patent explains that it will use a variety of methods to detect what people are playing or watching and attempt to show relevant ads. So if it sees that you have an Xbox plugged in, it may try to serve you ads that it thinks an Xbox owner would be interested in.

If this all sounds scary and dystopian (a future where we won’t be able to pause our offline, old DVD movies without seeing an ad for something), keep in mind that Roku isn’t moving forward with these plans yet. Your Roku TV will not start delivering Disney+ ads to your device. Call of Duty pause screen tonight.

But when you think Roku loses Over $40 million in 2023 Since it earned $1.6 billion from hardware sales and advertising and services that same year, it looks like this HDMI ad placement patent could one day come true. If someone buys a cheap Roku TV and never uses the apps, only using it to play Xbox or PS5, Roku will effectively lose money on that sale. This patent will allow even more dollars to be squeezed from everyone.

And because Companies are dependent on “number growth”, I’m inclined to bet that Roku and others will eventually do whatever it takes to make said numbers grow even further, consequences be damned. These companies will continue to display more and more ads on your screen, making it harder for you to enjoy the actual content you want to see, regardless of how it might ruin your experience.




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