Apple today released a free desktop application enabling third parties to build creative for its iAd in-app mobile advertising network, having previously handled all production duties for the ads itself.
The iAd Producer software will allow advertisers or agencies to create their own ads in a "point-and-click" fashion, and will automatically generate the HTML5 code necessary for them to run on Apple devices such as the iPhone and the iPad. Users can incorporate page templates, animation effects, and their own multimedia content in a drag and drop fashion, effectively removing the need for advanced development skills.
"iAd Producer makes it easy for you to design and assemble high-impact, interactive content for iAd… to make creating beautiful, motion-rich iAd content as easy as point and click," the product page states.
Since it launched the iAd earlier this year, Apple has faced criticism from advertisers for insisting it produce campaign creative itself, which it said was to ensure the quality of initial campaigns. It's also been challenged by developers alleging a lack of advertisers has resulted in low fill-rates for their inventory.
This software could address both concerns, lowering the barrier to entry for potential advertisers, which in turn could support adoption and higher fill rates for application publishers.
Though advertisers will still need to liaise with Apple regarding the purchase of media, the tool's launch suggests an end-to-end self-serve platform could be on the horizon, with Apple simply responsible for approving or rejecting creative as it does with its App Store.
Developers already registered with Apple can download the software now.
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Jack Marshall was a staff writer and stats editor for ClickZ News from 2007 until August 2011.
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