Microsoft has announced plans to develop its upcoming Windows Phone 7 smartphone OS as an "ad serving platform".
Speaking at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, Microsoft senior executive Kostas Mallios said that the platform, set to be released in October, will play a pivotal role in expanding Microsoft's interests in the lucrative mobile advertisement market.
Currently the mobile advertising market is dominated by Google, as well as Apple's newly launched iAd platform.
Mallios explained that the Windows Phone 7 platform would allow advertisers to serve their adverts on three different levels.
The first level will be application-based, with static adverts adverts that can be updated by advertisers.
The second level, Tiles, are graphic advertisements that can be 'pinned' onto users' home screen. Advertisers will be able to update the dynamic advertisements automatically.
The third level, Toast, will allow advertisers to push adverts onto users' smartphones even if they have not installed an associated application.