You might recall that last year Google announced a new feature called Instant Apps where instead of users having to download an app to test it, the app can be run (sometimes in a limited capacity) from the web instantly, thus giving users access to certain features without wasting time downloading the app and installing it.
Turns out that this is an idea that Microsoft thinks is great because the company has since announced “Playable Ads”. According to Microsoft, “Playable Ads are a completely new way for end users to interact with ads and apps. With this capability, end users never leave the current app. The ad click will result in inline expandable app streaming: for three minutes, the user can interact with the app as if it’s already installed on his/her device.”
Basically it’s similar to Google’s Instant Apps, but it runs as more of a trial so that users can test out an app before deciding whether or not to download it. Microsoft adds, “This gives the user time to decide if he or she wants to install the app. At the end of the streaming session, users can click on a link to install the app if the app experience met expectations.”
Now 3 minutes is admittedly rather short to try and decide whether or not an app is suited for your needs, but some users could find it useful anyway. Microsoft claims that Playable Ads is currently under a limited preview so don’t expect to see it rolled out on a wider scale just yet.