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Roku Wants to Show Ads When You Pause Game or Video

If the patent is accepted, HDMI-connected devices will be affected.

Image credit: Roku

The streaming TV company Roku filed a patent suggesting it wants to add ads to the video feeds of devices connected to its TVs via HDMI.

As spotted by Lowpass, if you decide to take a break from your Xbox game or Apple TV, Roku will run commercials on the screen.

"When the media device pauses the media content, the display device can determine that a pause event has occurred and insert an ad shown on the display device."

Image credit: Roku

The company would determine the context of what you were doing and show ads relevant to the content. Right now, Roku has a screensaver feature for this purpose, but once you plug in another device with an HDMI cable, the company can't monetize this "free" time.

The patent is now pending, but if it's approved, it won't necessarily be implemented as companies often patent ideas they never use. However, I highly doubt Roku would let go of such an opportunity, so I'd say you should be ready for more ads.

Sony is especially prolific when it comes to patents: it has filed one for a system that would allow players to revisit specific moments or sections in a game, another for improved haptic feedback, for customizable emojis for VR, and more.

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