June 18, 2018 | by Alexian Chiavegato

AdTech Weekly Roundup

A look at how last week’s news affects mobile publishers…

Snapchat Opens Up to Developers with Snap Kit
Snap Inc. is finally allowing third-party developers access to its Snapchat platform, introducing a set of APIs that will enable developers to integrate their own apps with Snapchat. Despite finally opening up its ecosystem to external developers, Snap is retaining a focus on privacy, promising that only limited data will be shared. Snap Kit consists of four APIs that will enable third-party developers to connect their own apps to Snapchat. Creative Kit allows developers to integrate their own stickers, filters, links and other features into the Snapchat camera. Login Kit will let consumers use their Snapchat account as a quick secondary log in within third-party apps, as well as unlocking new features within both Snapchat and other apps. Bitmoji Kit focuses on Snap’s cartoon avatars, enabling them to be integrated into other messaging services and other apps, and Story Kit enables developers to filter and embed publicly shared Snapchat Stories into their own apps and services.

Survey: 87% of Mobile Marketers see Success with Location Targeting
A survey of 700 in-house and agency marketers using mobile marketing finds that 87-percent are using location targeting. A large majority of respondents reported positive results. The report was written by Lawless Research and commissioned by Factual. Survey respondents were from a wide range of industries including automotive, CPG, financial services, travel and others. The breakdown of respondents included over 530 from brands/in-house marketers and the remainder from agencies. They were screened on the basis of whether they did mobile marketing and were then asked about their use of location and location data. As one would expect, ad targeting was the main use of location, but personalization and improved customer experience were close behind, as was “audience engagement.” The reported benefits seen by respondents largely mirrored those objectives: customer growth and engagement. Audience insights also ranked highly.

Brits Heavily Favor Smartphones over Smart Glasses for AR Experiences
In a survey, a vast majority of Brits would prefer for augmented reality (AR) experiences to be introduced on smartphones to add to various areas of their lives, as opposed to using smart glasses to accomplish the same tasks. According to a survey of 1,000 UK smartphone users by Mindshare, which was analyzed by OnBuy.com, 87 per cent of Brits would prefer to experience AR effects on social media via their smartphones, while 82 per cent favored QR code packaging and 78 per cent are open to the use of AR on smartphones to fulfil basic tasks. Elsewhere, it was found that 71 per cent would prefer using their smartphone to visualize items before buying online and 67 per cent feel the same about visualizing ‘how to’ instructions. The area where Brits are most open to using smart glasses is for wayfinding purposes – with 38 per cent preferring to use them over their phones for that task.

IAB Tech Lab Releases VAST 4.1 for Public Comment
The Interactive Advertising Bureau Technology Laboratory released its Digital Video Ad Serving Template (VAST) version 4.1 for public comment on Thursday, rolling out significant changes to the specification. VAST 4.1 will include compatibility with the open measurement interface definition to more effectively measure web-based ads, as well as improved verification. The update also addresses server-side ad insertion and the integration of digital audio ad serving template. The open comment period will run through July 14, after which the IAB Tech Lab Digital Video Technical Standards Working Group will examine the comments, make any needed revisions and release the final standard. The IAB Tech Lab is developing webinars and blog posts to better inform the marketplace about the updates to VAST, and it is developing a VAST compliance program to certify the new implementations. Buchheim says that the IAB will “work with verification vendors, video player vendors, publishers, and the buy side to explain” the benefits of the specification.

Five Takeaways from the Reuters Institute Digital News Report
Podcasts, fake news and digital assistants are all key growing trends highlighted in the seventh annual Reuters Institute Digital News Report. The report surveyed more than 74,000 people in 37 markets like Europe, the U.S., Asia and Latin America. In it, growing trends in news and media are analyzed and this year’s findings intersect strongly with social media platforms—perhaps more blatantly than ever before.