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Figure 9-3. Mobile in-app ad spending worldwide 2012 to 2015 (Source: )
With in-app ad spending on the rise for the next few years to come, now is a perfect time to learn how to deploy
rich advertisements to these new distribution channels. But it's not all fun and profit just yet; there are some key
technological points you'll need to grasp before you can develop across OSs. You may think that all the bugs are
ironed out by now and that this landscape is much less fragmented than what you learned initially with HTML5
and other mobile devices in general. Sadly, this is far from the case, and in the next section, you'll learn about the
additional fragmentation that needs to be considered when working with in-application ads.
Fragmentation in HTML5 is pretty apparent, as you've learned in previous chapters. It's even more so in the mobile
web space, with all the different operating systems, version numbers, and various levels of HTML5 compliance.
For the in-application world of mobile, it gets even trickier because now developers have to understand which
applications support which ad platform SDKs and versions of the SDK. Software development kits (SDKs) are used
by many publisher and application ad servers to handle the trafficking and scheduling of various ad tags in many
different application environments. Think of SDKs as the mediatory level between the ad management system and
the application living on a user's device. Since SDKs are really just a bit of code to include in the native application,
the developer needs the foresight to see that their application should or will include advertising at some point. For
example, currently some applications such as Facebook, Instagram, and even Twitter do not have ads, so no third-
party ad SDKs would be needed in the development of their applications. However, applications like the Wall Street
Journal , USA Today , and Pandora Radio offer advertising to a user in exchange for free content, whether it be music,
sports, or news. These ads are typically trafficked through a publisher-side ad server and application SDK. On one
side of things, you have the ad server's campaign management tool, which allows users to schedule and target their
tags as well as set up basic delivery rules. On the other side of things, you have an SDK that communicates with that
campaign management tool in order to receive the specific ads scheduled. Figure 9-4 better illustrates the connection
between the two ends.
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