Kontagent forms alliance, releases API to standardize mobile advertising

By Kathleen De Vere Comment

Kontagent is aiming to bring some order to the mobile marketing industry with the launch of the Mobile Acquisition Transparency Alliance (MATA) today. Led by Kontagent, MATA has created an open source API designed to establish a standardized nomenclature around mobile ad reporting. Other launch partners include Chartboost, PlayHaven and MdotM.

The goal behind the MATA API is simple — if mobile ad companies conformed to a single standard, it would make it easier for information to travel between advertising providers, developers and analytics providers like Kontagent.

“This pain point has been around for years,” explains Aaron Huang, Kontagent’s director of product marketing. “Today, if I run on five ad networks, I get five different types of reports back. What I want is consolidated information on installs, clicks and costs.”

According to Huang, lack of standardization means that the same parameter might be called Site ID by one ad network, Campaign ID by another and Content ID by a third. This makes it hard for developers to accurately ingest information and determine how effective their campaigns actually were — something Kontagent thinks will hurt the industry as a whole over time.

“As an analytics provider we see the industry in a different light,” he says. “We’re between ad networks and app developers. We took it upon us to try and develop an open standard.” Huang tells us the MATA API will be platform-agnostic. Companies that use the MATA API will be able to access data from any other company using it, but there is no requirement to work with Kontagent or other MATA launch partners.

The announcement is also relevant in terms of Apple’s crackdown on UDIDs. With no clear winner to replace UDIDs, standard reporting terms will help industry players stay on the same page explains Huang. MATA’s API has been designed to support whatever UDID replacement a company decides to use.

According to Huang, several developers and ad networks are are already members of MATA, and the alliance has been designed to represent the industry as a whole. Interested parties can visit http://www.openmata.org to learn more about the group and its open API.