Google is running another ad test this week, this time for Google Video. Under the Free Today program, selected clips from the Google Video Store will be available for free download, instead of the usual fee, which ranges from $0.30 to $14.99. The current free offerings were previously priced as high as $4.95.
The catch, of course, is the free videos include ads. There is a persistent text and image branding unit above the video content, which links to the advertiser's site. There is also a :15 to :30 post-roll video ad. Ads are from a single advertiser; the winning bidder in an auction, according to a Google spokesperson.
The ad-supported clips will not be able to be saved to a file, as the paid downloads are. The free videos are promoted on the Google Video home page