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IAB adds viewability spec, and much more, in latest edition of MRAID

Tyrone Stewart

Man on phoneThe Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has made several additions to its Mobile Rich Media Ad Interface Definitions (MRAID) with the launch of its third version.

The MRAID specification was first introduced by the IAB in 2011. It originally enabled ad designers to write a creative once, and run it on any app on any platform that was compatible. Now, it helps designers to create rich media ad experiences at scale – enabling them to use MRAID’s functionalities to have their ads expand, resize, adjust to device orientation, and more.

MRAID 3.0 adds long-called-for viewability support, meaning the creative can measure viewability as per industry standards; audibility measurement, which enables the creative to understand user context and use audio in ads non-disruptively; a standardised close button, ensuring users always have a way to get off an ad; host ad container recognition of an error, leading to the initiation of a ‘graceful exit’ to preserve user experience; basic environment information, such as SDK, IFA, and COPPA; a stricter events implementation sequence; guidance for pre-fetched ads; location data, when allowed by the use and the app publishers; and select VPAID events being fully integrated.

“MRAID is about empowering publishers and consumers, as well as the advertisers. The MRAID standard is compatible with industry standards such as the DAA Ad Marker Implementation Guidelines for Mobile,” said Aron Schatz, senior product manager at ViralGains, in a blog post. “When you combine all of the above with the new MRAID compliance and certification process from the IAB Tech Lab, MRAID will truly become the ‘write once, run anywhere’ standard.”

In addition to the introduction of MRAID 3.0, the MRAID committee will work on a new set of MRAID 3.0 compliance ads to be used for certifying SDKs. In addition, it will create a best practices guide regarding the implementation of the new features.