Google Patents Ads Based on Temperature, Noise

Search giant wants to watch your surroundings via device sensors
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 23, 2012 8:04 AM CDT

(Newser) – Watching your search habits and email apparently isn't enough for Google. The company was awarded a patent this week for "advertising based on environmental conditions," PC World reports. Google intends to gather information on your surroundings via sensors in your phone or tablet—things like temperature, humidity, light, and even background noise—and use that to decide which ads to show you.

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Google says the background noise would be gathered when customers made a phone call. So if you did so at, say, a sporting event, Google might start displaying ads for jerseys and tickets. Though the Next Web points out that Google won't employ people to eavesdrop on your calls (monitoring technology will do the detective work), "the fact that the company could unleash technology that monitors our calls in real-time is weird," writes Drew Orlanoff. To head off privacy concerns, Google has already said that if it does implement the idea it will give users the ability to turn it off. (Read more Google stories.)

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