There's not a lot of details out about Apple's upcoming mobile advertising program, iAds, quite yet, but Broadpoint Amtech is already convinced it's a moneymaker. Analysts there say that the program could generate a whopping US$4.67 billion in revenue in just one year's time. Of course, that's a high-end guess, but even the medium figures are pretty amazing -- analyst Brian Marshall suggests that even conservatively, Apple could earn $2.48 billion. Realize what we're talking about here: this is more or less a from-scratch profit stream for Apple, and with developers receiving 60% of the revenue from iAds, Apple won't be the only company making money.
In fact, Apple's good news may benefit Google, too -- CEO Eric Schmidt said that Apple's iAds announcement should convince those concerned that Google's deal with AdMob is good to go, and that the two companies will just be one big player in "a highly competitive market." Of course, Google has a bit more advertising experience than Apple -- it made most of its $23.7 billion revenue last year from its online advertising model. While iAds sounds big, it's not quite that big.
Still, iAds will be big, and there's room to grow -- Apple is starting off with the mobile market, but don't forget that they've got a whole library of iTunes podcasts, and content space on AppleTV to sell as well. At this time next year, we might be reporting that Apple really has created a $2.5 billion-per-year income stream for themselves.