Several startups are experimenting with technologies that could completely overhaul the way connected devices are targeted and tracked.
Using new products from companies like BlueCava and Ringleader Digital, advertisers will be able to link and track individual consumers on their mobile phones, desktop PCs, tablet devices, games consoles, TVs – even their cars – and serve them ads based on activity across those devices.
They will do so using a process often referred to as device fingerprinting, an emerging device identification technique which could eventually replace the cornerstone of online measurement and data collection, the cookie.
When a connected device accesses content or services, it transmits bits of information about its properties and settings. For example, a smartphone might communicate details of which operating system and browser versions it’s running, its time zone, and which carrier network it’s using, to name but a few.