AOL, Microsoft and Yahoo announced they will partner to design a set of standard technical specifications for purchasing programmatic advertisements aimed at simplifying the process. Growth of programmatic ads has previously been hampered by cumbersome manual processes that vary by company. "We see this approach as being both 'advertiser friendly' and 'publisher friendly' -- something that will address the challenges and inefficiencies that make it hard to scale big brand buys on the Internet," said Rik van der Kooi, Microsoft's corporate vice president for advertising.

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