The Ad War That's Engulfing Europe

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Talk about irony. In the same week the Beatles' British invasion reaches iTunes, Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) announces plans to send iAd on a European tour.

Announced in April, iAd is Apple's answer to Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) AdMob mobile advertising network.

Next month, the Mac maker will begin publishing iAds on iOS 4 devices (i.e., the most recent iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad) in the U.K. and France. Germany will follow in January, Apple said in its press release. Why should Fools care? Simple: iAd, like iTunes, could deliver a healthy stream of high-margin moola if enough advertisers embrace the platform.

They appear to like what they see. Apple named L'Oreal, Renault, Louis Vuitton, Nespresso, Perrier, Unilever (NYSE: UL  ) , Citi, Evian, LG Display, AB InBev, Turkish Airlines, and Absolute Radio as some of its initial European iAd buyers.

Longer term, an international iAd platform that stretches from mobile devices to consumer electronics could be exactly the blunt instrument Apple TV needs to fight off (Nasdaq: AMZN  ) , TiVo (Nasdaq: TIVO  ) , and Google's interesting-but-complex interactive TV offering.

Think about the pitch: Sign with us, and we'll get your ad to consumers where they are -- on the couch, in the stadium, or strolling the streets of Paris. Google's going to be able to say that same thing at some point. Apple may as well say it first.

Now it's your turn to weigh in. What do you think will be the future for iAd? Please vote in the poll below and then leave a comment to explain your thinking.

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Apple and are Motley Fool Stock Advisor selections. Our Motley Fool Inside Value and Motley Fool Rule Breakers services have recommended subscribers buy shares of Google. Our Motley Fool Global Gains and Motley Fool Income Investor services have recommended subscribers buy shares of Unilever. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers is a member of the Rule Breakers stock-picking team. He had stock and options positions in Apple and a stock position in Google at the time of publication. Check out Tim's portfolio holdings and Foolish writings, or connect with him on Twitter as @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Google and is also on Twitter as @TheMotleyFool. Its disclosure policy can't add it up some days. Today isn't one of those days.

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