Though Cortana is has generated the biggest headlines from Microsoft’s annual Build Conference, the company dangled a few new carrots to entice app developers to focus on creating apps for Windows. Microsoft released new software development kits (SDKs) designed to help developers earn more money from their Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone apps through advertising as well as new tools to monitor revenue performance and promote their own apps.
The new ad SDK for Windows 8.1 allows for ads to be served from third-party mobile rich media ad servers and connects to the Microsoft Ad Exchange. The SDK aligns with the standards for mobile rich media advertising in mobile apps set forth by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) in MRAID v1.0.
New SDKs for Windows Phone 8.0 Silverlight and Windows Phone 8.1 XAML are also aimed at improving ad revenue for app developers. The Silverlight version will be available later this month.
Microsoft hopes the new ad revenue incentives will encourage developers to build more apps for the Windows ecosystem. The company also unveiled a redesigned Microsoft pubCenter where developers can see advertising activity generated from their apps. Below is a look at the reporting dashboard.
To help developers promote their Windows Phone apps, Microsoft launched a new in-app advertising program available in the U.S. The ads are booked and automatically created from existing assets right from pubCenter. The campaigns are CPM based at this time, and ads run in apps across the US App Network for Windows Phone.