AdEx is a blockchain-based advertising exchange that just launched its token sale. Here’s our AdEx review.
What is AdEx?
AdEx is an advertising platform built on the blockchain. The AdEx token sale launched on Friday, June 30.
The goal of AdEx is to disrupt the online advertising industry by solving problems like advertising fraud, excessive use of ad blockers, and privacy concerns. The platform also promises to introduce a consent-based system where users can opt-in to receive sponsored messages.
AdEx is completely transparent and built on top of the Ethereum blockchain. It relies on Ethereum smart contracts. Here’s how the official website explains the platform’s goal:
“We believe we can empower advertisers and publishers with a platform that is secure, transparent and beneficial for all the parties involved in the process, consumers included.”
To bring their project to life, AdEx has partnered with big industry names like Bitmain, Wings, Stremio, and the Fintech Blockchain Group. The company is led by co-founders Ivo Georgiev and Dimo Stoyanov.
AdEx offers all of the following core features:
- Crystal clear, detailed reporting
- Available for all browsers, including mobile and desktop browsers
- Emphasis on user privacy
- Regulated by the end users
- Emphasis on the entertainment industry, particularly video streaming services and publishers
Overall, AdEx’s features are designed to replace the traditional advertising models in use today.
How Does AdEx Work?
The core feature of AdEx is the AdEx User Profile, which is a personalized page that allows every end user to understand and control the ads delivered to them. By giving the user control, everyone benefits: advertisers can access more information about the customer because they have voluntarily provided more information about their preferences, consumer behavior, shopping habits, and purchase preferences.
The Ethereum blockchain and smart contracts, meanwhile, are designed to provide transparent reporting for users and advertisers. It provides an immutable record of the performance of an advertising campaign.
The best way to gain further insight into how AdEx works is to look at the problems the platform seeks to solve.
What Kinds of Problems Does AdEx Solve?
AdEx is seeking to solve some of the fundamental problems of online advertising, including all of the following:
Lack of Consumer Consent
Google, Facebook, and other popular advertising networks give users some control over what ads they see. However, this functionality is limited. AdEx, on the other hand, gives each user a “user profile”, where they can remove ads that they’re not interested in. That means more precise targeting for advertisers, a lower opportunity for mistakes, and higher conversion rates.
Privacy Concerns and Data Misuse
Major advertising networks and exchanges operate with huge amounts of centralized data that can easily be traced back to consumers’ identities. Consumers have no idea how their data is used, which introduces online privacy concerns. The blockchain technology used by AdEx makes it easy to anonymize large chunks of data, which means user data can be used for statistical purposes, but it won’t be tied to individual users. Advertisers can still view valuable data, but user privacy isn’t sacrificed.
Lack of Bidding Transparency
Real-time bidding platforms offer surprisingly little information about advertising bids. Advertisers are told the maximum bid for a particular ad property, but they cannot verify this in a transparent way. Since AdEx is built on the blockchain, advertisers can easily trace every click or view and verify each component of the campaign, including participants, ad placements, impression, and clicks. The information is decentralized, which means it can’t be manipulated by centralized ad exchanges.
Fraud is a huge problem in the world of online advertising. Reports put the value of online advertising fraud at over $15 billion per year. AdEx has anti-fraud mechanisms to trace and prevent fraud and invalidate advertising traffic. The company doesn’t go into detail about how its anti-fraud measures work, but describes them as “technical mechanisms”.
Ad Blockers and Ad Blindness
615 million devices worldwide user ad blockers. Users have grown weary of ads that are too intrusive and/or irrelevant, so they install ad blockers. AdEx solves this problem by giving users clever, meaningful ads that they actually want to see.
What’s the Difference Between AdEx and Other Blockchain-based Advertising Platforms?
Obviously, AdEx isn’t the only blockchain technology seeking to disrupt the online advertising industry. We have Brave Software and their Basic Attention Token (BAT), for example, as well as qChain, adChain, and NASDAQ’s NYIAX.
What’s the difference between AdEx and these competitors? The company specifically address this concern in its whitepaper:
“While all these ad exchanges come from strong teams, the truth is we are all sailing in uncharted waters here. This is why it is extremely important to have exceptional understanding of both cryptography and ad tech, as well as to stay as open in possible in terms of platform and device availability.”
AdEx differentiates itself by removing restrictions. BAT is limited to the Brave browser online. NYIAX is targeting the financial industry. AdEx, on the other hand, is targeting the entire online advertising industry and works on all browsers.
Ultimately, however, AdEx does acknowledge they have competition in the space:
“We are excited about the fact that we do have competition as this will push us to deliver a service superior to the others. Competition is healthy and will benefit the entire advertising ecosystem.”
What is the AdEx Token?
AdEx will launch its AdEx token (ADX) on June 30. The token will be used internally to buy or sell advertising space and time.
Advertisers can create ads, then place bids for them in ADX tokens. advertisers can bid for a specific number of impressions, clicks, or conversions (like sign ups or purchases, for example). When a publisher accepts a bid, the token will be frozen until the publisher proves they have completed that goal. When that happens, the token will be transferred to the publisher.
Certain actions within the network are incentivized by the creation of additional tokens. This will ensure slow, on-demand inflation of the token.
The token is based on the Ethereum blockchain and is an ERC20-compatible token. 80% of the tokens will be sold between June and July.
AdEx was created by the same team that created the video entertainment hub Stremio. The company was co-founded by Ivo Georgiev and Dimo Stoyanov. Together, the team “brings extensive experience in the areas of software development, cryptography and blockchain, video streaming, as well as in marketing and online advertising to the table”, explains the company’s whitepaper.
To help bring AdEx to life, the company has partnered with industry giants like Wings and Bitmain. In 2051, Bitmain invested a significant amount into Stremio, so the teams have a long history of working together.
The company launched in June 2016. AdEx hopes to deliver its first prototype as early as February 2018. That prototype will include a basic ad bidding system with a front-end for advertisers and a front-end for publishers, as well as an SDK for publishers. The prototype will focus on native advertising and display advertising.
Over the course of 2018, the company plans to heavily develop its business while boosting the adoption of AdEx. The second version of AdEx is estimated for release in January 2019.
AdEx is an advertising platform that aims to disrupt the online advertising industry. Using the Ethereum blockchain and smart contracts, AdEx plans to improve transparency in the advertising industry while giving advertisers and publishers a P2P marketplace where they can bid for ad space.
The crowdsale for AdEx began on June 30, 2017. By February, 2018, the company hopes to release a prototype.