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Google Maps. Photo: Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Google has begun building out the next phase of its advertising business around its ability to track users' locations in real time. 

Driving the news: The company has begun publicly talking about its next big moneymaker: Maps.

What they're saying: “We want to be able to highlight things that are around you and surface them nearby to you in a way that’s not disrupting your experience," Google told Ad Age last week.

Between the lines: Google's also beefing up the ads that it will serve via its real-time directions app Waze, which said last month it is teaming with ad giant WPP (via its ad-buying arm GroupM) to help it develop new ad formats.

  • In a pitch deck revealed to Digiday last month, the company said it would sell ads that try to convince drivers to alter their routes by using things like "branded pins" that would guide drivers to nearby stores or restaurants.

Yes, but: "Scale and location is not just about real time, it's about receptivity," says Andrew Essex, CEO of Plan A and author of "The End of Advertising."

  • For this reason, the out-of-home (billboard) industry has been able to champion real-time, location-based advertising as it moves into mobile ad-serving partnerships. These companies have for years used real-time location data to serve users with ads that mimic the ones they see on billboards or subway posters.

Go deeper: What else Google knows about you

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Inhofe loudly sets Trump straight on defense bill

Sen. Jim Inhofe speaks with reporters in the Capitol last month. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Senator Jim Inhofe told President Trump today he'll likely fail to get two big wishes in pending defense spending legislation, bellowing into his cellphone: "This is the only chance to get our bill passed," a source who overheard part of their conversation tells Axios.

Why it matters: Republicans are ready to test whether Trump's threats of vetoing the bill, which has passed every year for more than half a century, are empty.

Conspiracy theories blow back on Trump's White House

Sidney Powell. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

President Trump has rarely met a conspiracy theory he doesn't like, but he and other Republicans now worry the wild tales told by lawyers Sidney Powell and Lin Wood may cost them in Georgia's Senate special elections.

Why it matters: The two are telling Georgians not to vote for Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler because of a bizarre, baseless and potentially self-defeating theory: It's not worth voting because the Chinese Communist Party has rigged the voting machines.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Bolton lauds Barr for standing up to Trump

John Bolton. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

John Bolton says Attorney General Bill Barr has done more to undercut President Trump's baseless assertions about Democrats stealing the election than most Senate Republicans by saying publicly that the Justice Department has yet to see widespread fraud that could change the election's outcome.

What he's saying: “He stood up and did the right thing," Bolton said in a Wednesday phone interview.