Much in the same vein as their email provider, Gmail, Google has started to roll out self-promoting ads in their popular Web browser Chrome.
As reported by ZDNet, the ad that was found is promoting the new Google Chromebooks, which are Google's cloud-based laptops. They appear in the new tab page when first opening up the browser or opening a new tab. The ad seems similar to the ads found in Gmail, which show banner ads at the top of the mail client promoting Google related products and services as well as banner ads on Google's front page.
It also prompted ZDNet to ask: "Is this a deal breaker for you?"
While Google's livelihood resides in software and through that, advertising, it might have some fans giving Chrome the boot and giving competitors such as Firefox a try. Currently, Internet Explorer still reigns as the dominant web browser, Chrome comes in third with 32.3 percent of the market as of October 2011, but, is steadily gaining users and is closing in at Firefox's second place spot.
Chrome is also reported as the fastest browser available, with the simplistic minimalism Google has come to offer on top of that.
As CNET points out, these non-intrusive ads could also be mimicking the same ones found on Google's main page. It could be used as a "ticker" so to speak, advertising their services as well as pointing out important dates or information during a natural disaster.
For example, Google used their front page to help victims of the March tsunami disaster in Japan to find loved ones. Important dates have also been highlighted, as well as Google related products and contests such as their doodling contest. Chrome could be experiencing the same trial run currently, to test the reaction of their users and being a secondary outlet for news and promotion.
Conveniently, however, their cloud-centric Chromebook is currently available for purchase during the 2011 Holiday season. So, it could just be another display to sell their laptops.
The three-year-old browser has always been an on-going experiment for Google, though. The mission of Chrome was to develop a browser which was fast, reliable, safe, and also a large platform for programmers to develop web apps. It remains a constant playing field for experimenting as well as another outlet of revenue for Google.
Not all users of Chrome will see the advertisements. So far it has been a randomly generated banner ad, there are no requirements or projects a user needs to be affiliated with to see them.