Android Bytes

…everything is a bytearray after all

Getting paid to view ads on your mobile phone is no new concept. A few years ago it was a short-lived craze, with Virgin Mobile’s Sugarmama service leading the way. Users generally raved about it, loving that they could pay for airtime just by viewing ads on their phones. Other services realized some success, too — I remember about a half dozen similar companies that had booths at CTIA 2008. But soon enough Sugarmama stopped paying out, and the other services fell off everyone’s radar. It left in question the ability for such a service to provide long-term value to users, but that won’t stop newcomers from giving it a whirl. A new app in the Android Market gives you the opportunity to subsidize your cell bill by viewing select advertisements.

Tooyoou suffers first from a tough-to-type name, but once you get past that into the service you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what it can offer. Viewing the ads is much easier than it was for any previous incarnation of this business model. Previously you’d have to choose when you view the ads, or have the ads served following events such as phone calls. Tooyoou puts the ads in a widget on your home screen, so you have every opportunity to see more ads and make more money. It’s definitely the best implementation of this business model I’ve yet seen.

The app itself allows you to track and manage your account. This includes the types of ads you’re interested in seeing as well as your performance stats. This way you can make sure that Tooyoou is only serving you ads that might — if you were the type of person who enjoys advertisements, which clearly you are not, since you are human — benefit you directly. The only other facet of the app is the widget banner, which replaces a row of your home screen with said advertisement.

There are some downsides to the app, as would be expected. The first is the constant need for a data connection. I’m not sure how much data the app uses, but now that many carriers have switched to tiered data plans, you might want to monitor that for a few weeks to make sure it’s not substantially eating into your allotment. The heavy data use could also have battery life implications, though Tooyoou insists that the app doesn’t consume a significant portion of your battery.

They say the average user makes $2.50 per month, which might not seem like a lot. But for any Android user, and especially prepaid Android users, that can make a dent in a monthly cell bill. And who knows: maybe you’ll be one of the people bringing up the average. You can download Tooyoou from the Android Market for free. Let us know if you make some dough off it.

Via Phandroid.

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