Opera gets into the ad business with its Open Mobile Ad Exchange

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Opera MiniWeb browser maker Opera Software announced today that it is officially getting into the advertising business with the launch of its Open Mobile Ad Exchange.

The service brings cloud-based ads to feature phones and smartphones via the Opera Mini web browser, which has some 66.5 million users worldwide. It will offer publishers a way to maximize their revenue from Opera apps and mobile websites, advertisers will be able to take advantage of real-time analytics and reporting, and it will have support for advanced campaign management.

The Open Mobile Ad Exchange most likely comes out of Opera’s purchase of mobile advertising firm AdMarvel in January.

Unlike Apple’s iAd (which stems from its Quattro Wireless purchase) and Google’s recently acquired AdMob, which are both focusing on smartphone advertising, Opera may be able to carve out a decent advertising niche among feature phones and low-end smartphones. Opera Mini is one of the most popular ways for feature phone users to browse the web, and Opera’s many years pursuing mobile browsing will make it tough to overthrow.

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