WP7 Do you want ads with that?

Contrary to what is posted, writing phone apps is NOT a road to riches. Not everyone can have the luck of writing an Angry Bird app. The actual writing of a simple app is very easy, the trick is to create something that people want. So far I have submitted five apps in the past year, but only one, a free one,  is approaching the 100 app download mark. The $0.99 apps have only been downloaded less than a dozen times. Obviously, getting the word out is important, but before I go that route, I think I will try adding ads to an app to see how that helps when I do make some noise about the apps.

So what does it mean to add ads to an app? The actual process is very easy. The ad control is part of the toolkit and it is just a matter of adding an ad id to the application. Canadian Evangelist, Paul Laberge has a good article for Canadians starting the paperwork http://blogs.msdn.com/b/cdnmobiledevs/archive/2011/12/09/getting-paid-on-the-marketplace-just-got-a-lot-easier.aspx and it is relatively easy to create the ad units following the instructions at http://advertising.microsoft.com/mobile-apps.

One problem with the process is that you need to have an app id to create the ad unit. So that means submitting the app, get an app id, request the ad id, add that to your app and resubmit the app. I have seen suggestions to submit, grab the id BEFORE the app is approved and then cancel the app submission. Then continue with getting the ad id and then do the actual app submission. There is no guarantee that the app id you get with the aborted submission will actually be given to the app that actually gets submitted.

I am curious how ads handle with orientation changes. The ad width stays at 480 and the suggesetion location is at the bottom will be hidden when the phone is rotated. I’ll update this when I find out.

Another area that raises questions is how do you hide the ads when you decide to use trial mode to turn off the ads. Other than deleting from the tree, the two ways to hide the ad are to change its’ opacity or visiblity. Changing the visibility will remove the ad from the tree. Microsoft Evangelist, Brian Hitney seems to indicate that the ads continue to run when the ad is hidden http://structuretoobig.com/post/2010/10/17/WP7-Ad-Control-Experience.aspx

So, I have an app submitted to the marketplace, so I will add to this blog when I find out more.

John Marshall… Visio MVP       Visio.MVPs.org

Published by johnvisiomvp

The original Visio MVP. I have worked with the Visio team since 1993

3 thoughts on “WP7 Do you want ads with that?

  1. Great article. I’ve been a bit nervous about doing this for my apps. With your help, it’s a bit of confidence I might try it on my next app? Thanks.

    re getting the app id
    I think one of the last steps to app submission is to indicate what you want to do, automatically publish to Marketplace and another two. I think the other two are what you want to use? (ie don’t automatically release to marketplace)

    re now showing ads when paid for?
    I think setting the visibility property to the !IsTrial is the first place I’d try. Did that work for you?

    Good article and good luck!

    1. The problem is that you need to add the ad id to the XAP. To get the ad id, you need to “publish” the app to get an app id and use that to get the ad id. Then you add the ad id to your code and publish the new XAP.
      Visibility? I am just going by what Brian published. He seemed to indicate that when Visibility=Collapsed, the ad unit was not dormant.

  2. Not sure how I did it, but I definitely was able to create my AppID before submitting my app. I think when you create App in Pub Center, that is the AppID you use in the Ad Control in the app.

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