Now Playing on Your Phone: Video on Demand Classifieds

Classifieds have made their way to video (See RealPeopleRealStuff). But how about video on mobile phones? That’s a new effort being tried out in Portugal, where high-speed 3G phones are prevalent, but less than 40 percent of the population has Internet access.

The video ads are being provided by Ocasio, a shopper publication with a print circulation of 25,000. It is charging a premium of 2 euros (or $3.12) to run a video ad, on top of the regular 25 euro charge ($39) for running a 30-second video classified. Users wishing to access a video ad must dial a code (e.g., “760508509”) and wait roughly 10 seconds for it to upload. Users are also assessed a fee of 95 cents. The code is published in text and display ads in the publication.

The video service was developed by Zonadvanced, a Portuguese company that hopes to export its mobile video applications to other countries that have high-speed 3G access. President Nuno Carvalho, who spoke at the recent ICMA general meeting in Brussels, said video is “good for impulsive people,” and takes off on the success of personal video conferencing, which reached 60 million minutes after it was introduced last year in Portugal.

“With our video ad technology, we reach the 60 percent of the population that does not have Internet access, said Carvalho. He noted that all kinds of classified segments could be effectively advertised. Pets, for instance, will be introduced in 2009. For now, there are standard classified ads, plus erotic prerecorded chat.

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