In a day and age where 70% of Google publishers are reporting less earnings with Google, Google needs to take bold moves to get more people to see and click on their ads.
Google introduces expandable ads. The ads will be displayed on publisher sites and they can click on the ad to make them expand into a much large ad that overlays over the content of the page. The expandable ads can contain movie streams, show video game clips, or display various views of an item for sale.
Google said this won't disrupt the end user because it has to be clicked on to be expanded, will never be "double its width or height," the "user may close the expanded panel at any time," it won't change your content, and it has to comply with their terms. There is a comprehensive help section devoted to expanded ads at Google AdSense Help.
Here is a sample ad:
Publishers await to see if this helps earn them more money. Who is the real loser here? I guess the searcher or the average consumer. Outside of that, the advertiser, publisher and Google are all winners.
Also, this may lead to publishers trying new tricks to get people to click on the ad. Note, clicking on an ad to expand it does not generate cost to the advertiser, it is only the click that leads to the advertiser's landing page that has any cost.
By the way, Google is also testing more interactive ads, according to Amit Agarwal.