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Microsoft Announces New Policy Around Ad Unit Decommissioning

Microsoft on Monday, introduced new policy for ad unit decommissioning, as well as updates user experience to manage active/inactive ad units. The company also announced default policies around Ad network enablement, and changes to Ad impression measurement methodology for Windows apps.

Those who are leveraging Microsoft Advertising SDK (UWP or 8.x apps) to showads on Windows app will be impacted with the changes.

Going forward, Microsoft will begin auto enabling new ad networks for Manual ad units on UWP apps. Because, as on today, an UWP ad units configured with “Manual configuration” option don’t benefit with a new ad network is onboarded as they are not automatically turned on for the Manual ad units.

Microsoft over the next few weeks will turn on any new ad networks by default for all UWP ad units independent of “Manual” or “Automatic” configuration.

“For ad units in the Manual configuration, since the ad network waterfall configuration is determined by publisher’s choice, these ad networks will be added to bottom of the waterfall order.” “The publisher can then make necessary changes to reorder or opt out of the ad networks as necessary.”

As per recommendation publishers are suggested is to choose ‘Automatic’ ad unit configuration to get benefit from platform’s yield maximization capabilities.

Decommissioning of Ad Units

In an update to its ad unit decommissioning policy, Microsoft will now start deactivating and deleting inactive ad units that hasn’t generated any ad request in the last six months.

Some exceptional circumstances however will save you from this deactivation, for instance,

  • if an ad unit created several months ahead of app deployment time to use as the app goes live.
  • Or, when you’re planning to reuse an existing ad unit from previously inactive app into your new app.

Even in both these cases, Microsoft recommends to use newly created ad units instead of reusing an existing one to avoid potential Ad revenue loss.

Also, changes in the Windows Dev Center dashboard makig easier to view active and inactive Ad units were announced, like by just choosing an appropriate filter on the top of the page you can now view Active or Inactive ad units, and ad unit state is now identified in a separate Status column.

New Windows Dev Center Dashboard

Transitioning to Standards Measurement

Over the next few months, Microsoft will migrate all Windows app ad units relying on methods, such as server based Ad impression counting to Standards based Ad impression measurement. “Standards based measurement requires an “ad must be loaded and at minimum begin to render” to be counted as a valid impression.

More specifically, the impression counting will rely on techniques such as firing an ad network impression beacon upon starting to render the Ad on the client.

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