Mobile Ads - Wrong Place, Wrong Time?


After using the build-in alarm clock in Nexus S for a while, I decided to install Alarm Clock Plus after hearing about the features. If you haven’t already, go for it. It’s amazing.
So the app works fine or rather great. I also realize that since I downloaded the free version, I should expect banner ads on my screen. In fact, 96% of all apps downloaded in 2011 were...free!
My interaction with this app is really limited and there are only 2 occasions on which I use the app:

  • While setting the alarm
  • When the alarm goes off
Using the app in portrait mode, you get to see 4 alarms with the banner taking up the space for 1. However, switching to landscape mode is a little problematic with the display being able to show just 1 alarm and the banner taking up the remaining space. 



Is it possible for mobile networks to understand the difference and not show ads if it causes inconvenience to the viewer? Besides, would you pay attention to a banner ad when you’re just about to hit the bed??

If that’s still fine, consider this scenario...It’s 07:00 am and your alarm starts playing the most annoying tune to get you up and running. Not only that, Alarm Clock Plus has an option that can require you to do early morning math (e.g. 34+26...depending on the level of difficulty you set). Nothing like it... If your data/wifi is on, you will again see banner ads ...So you try to answer 34+26 in your head and a few seconds later, type 60 and with eyes that are barely open, but tap on the banner instead of ‘dismiss’ icon.

The browser opens and your annoying alarm tune keeps playing in the background till you switch back to the alarm clock... 

I guess the bigger question is, should advertisers be happy with such impressions (on Alarm Clock Plus and similar apps) seen by users when it's highly unlikely to get a good mobile ad CTR out of it or even count it as an impression when the users are either just about to wind down or just waking up and thus, not able to possibly recollect?

Have you ever had a bad experience with banner ads on any other app obstructing with your task?