Google signed an agreement to buy Adscape, an in-game advertising company, for $23 million.
The move comes after news broke last month that the Internet advertising giant was in the final stages of buying the startup, a deal that could give Google an entry point into a new advertising category.
But sources familiar with the in-game ad business said an Adscape acquisition gives Google little beyond a few potentially interesting patents. While market conditions could change rapidly, don't expect the Internet giant to announce big in-game ad deals with publishers like Electronic Arts anytime soon.
“There is a whole world of difference between the form of advertising done by Google and Madison Avenue,” one source familiar with the in-game ad business said, comparing Google's familiar text-based ads to the rich media used in videogames. “While everyone appreciates the dollars Google can throw around, when it comes to [in-game ad] experience they just don’t have it.”