Advertising on mobile phones is starting to see pickup, post TRAI’s restriction on advertising time on TV channels and with users spending more time on their smartphones.

“Bringing down ads to 12 minutes per hour, coupled with increased usage of smartphones and 4G will drive mobile advertising in India,” said Malcolm Wong, MD, APAC for Smaato, a mobile advertising company, which pushes around 6 billion ads in a day. Another trend that the company foresees is cross-screen advertising- which means that desktops, smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices are tied into one advertising campaign, allowing advertisers to reach out to their audiences across various channels.

“This will be facilitated by the rising demand for affordable 4G smartphones,” said Nimesh Shah, founder of Windchimes Communications. Further, as the prices for smartphones become more affordable to the masses, it would not be uncommon for consumers in India to own more than one device, which would increase the uptake of cross-screen advertising.

While this sounds promising, often users find pop up ads infuriating and block them. Wong believes that static banner-type ads will not see takers but native advertising, which involves intrusive kinds of ads will be the norm going forward.

“In this way it provides advertisers better click-through rates – twice to five times higher than those from banners or display ads and nearly double than that of their desktop cousins,” added Wong. Despite having one of the largest mobile penetration numbers in the world, forecasted to reach 638.4 million this year, according to Statista, the country is not scheduled to surpass $1 billion in mobile advertising spending until 2018. “It demonstrates how far it has had to come from being a nation of feature phones to a market with surging buying power, with a high degree of English-language skill, and one for publishers, marketers and advertisers,” said Wong.