Facebook‘s long-rumored auto play video ads have been delayed several times, but the hopefully-not-too-invasive spots have debuted in a limited form. Some Android users have begun to see auto play videos on their news feeds, with these intrepid Facebook users serving as a test group before the big rollout that may come a couple months down the line.
The test subjects will only see auto play ads for videos posted by their friends, not ones put up by brand or fan pages. We can see what these mobile ads look like thanks to a video from AdAge.
In that form, the ads don’t seem obtrusive at all. They don’t play sound unless the user interacts with them, and they don’t take anything away from the Facebook surfing experience. Unlike pre-roll ads, Facebook’s video spots (which I would like to dub ‘scroll-rolls’) can be easily ignored.
Of course, Facebook still has as much time as it needs to tweak this formula, and the completed scroll-rolls (please let this one catch on) may look nothing like the previews we’ve seen. Facebook is now targeting a Black Friday release date, allowing consumer brands can utilize Facebook as a marketing tool during their most critical months of the year. The recent test is a sure sign that this date will not be pushed back again.