Unstoppable ads have finally come to Snapchat.
Users will be disappointed to find that, for the first time, the ephemeral messaging app has started running adverts that users simply cannot skip.
The company is testing six-second long ads in Shows on its Discover section that won’t budge no matter how many times a user tries to tap to skip them.
This development has been coming for some time as Snapchat looks to placate advertisers who have grown frustrated by users who, on average, only stay on an ad for two seconds before skipping.
In order to support Snapchat’s profitability, the new ads run in professionally-produced Shows made by big content companies such as Viacom – who own MTV, ESPN or Disney.
Shows are Snapchat’s attempt to distil television for the mobile age, and usually consist of professionally packaged videos of between three and five minutes.
Now, users will be forced to watch a six second ad, called simply a Commercial, in the middle of a Show.
The new ads show users how many seconds remain if you try to skip them.
So far observers have spotted adverts for films such as Deadpool 2 and Adrift, and for the Samsung Galaxy S9 smartphone running on the new format.
At the moment the ads aren’t interactive like Snapchat’s other skippable ads, but there’s no word as to whether or not this is likely to change in future.
For now, the unskippable ads do not appear in user stories or personal snaps and are only found in the commercially produced Shows section.
Snapchat has clearly been forced to try something new in order to finally try to turn a profit by the end of this year.
In the past Snapchat had been reluctant to force ads on its audience, but, at least in its most obviously commercial feature, this has now changed as it hopes to convince users that premium content is worth watching an advert for.
This news comes after the company’s parent, Snap Inc, reported disappointing first quarter financial results this year and a fall in user growth.
This has come after a bold redesign to the social network in late 2017 caused more than a million users to sign a petition complaining at the changes, which were mostly made in order to delineate personal and commercial content.
In recent weeks Snapchat has reversed some of these changes by moving Stories back to the right-hand side of the app.
Snapchat have been contacted for comment.
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