Free, Ad-supported applications are of the of the biggest segments of the Windows Phone Store, but the rapid growth of the Windows Phone 8 market has outstripped Microsoft’s ability to provide ad inventory for these apps, resulting in a crash in earnings.
The natural route for these developers would be to implement ads from the biggest mobile ad provider in the world, Google’s AdMob, which has an ad network 10 times as large as its nearest competitor, according to App Brain.
While Google did release an AdMob SDK for Windows Phone 7 in March 2011, it seems there has been little change since, and this includes not upgrading the SDK to Windows Phone 8, essential for the higher resolution screens and other changes between the two operating systems.
On Google’s AdMob support forums Raj Parameswaran, Developer Programs Engineer at Google, said all the way back in December 2012 that the company was working on a Windows 8 SDK but did not have anything specific to announce.
Fast forward 6 months, and Google, who must have the slowest software engineers in the world, was still working on the SDK.
We are of course edging towards a year since the original statement, and so far there has been little sign that the software intends to be delivered.
Google’s Ad Mob team claims to be platform agnostic, saying back in 2011:
One of the three core principles of our mobile ads business is ‘inclusiveness’; advertisers and developers should have access to the tools they need to reach users across many mobile platforms.
Google’s attitude is therefore somewhat difficult to understand, given that the company traditionally enjoyed making money off other’s platforms, be they Windows desktops or Apple iPhones. This should especially be true given the real and significant growth of the Windows Phone platform recently, which means many tens of millions of Windows Phone users are going around hardly touching Google’s products on their phones. The only conclusion one can draw is that Google has seen an opportunity to create a Windows-like monopoly in mobile with Android, and is seeing Windows Phone growth as a threat, and is essentially trying to strangle the baby.
Google’s share holders may however want to pay attention to Google turning up their nose to very real immediate revenue while promoting a platform which they have already lost control of a long time ago, and which earn them very little money.
As for Windows Phone developers, we suggest you do not hold your breath waiting for Google to come to the rescue. Maybe in-app purchases would be a more reliable route to monetization, which Microsoft recently announcing that they are seeing more than 9 million transactions (both app purchases and in-app purchases) per day at present.
Do our readers agree Google is cutting off its nose to spite its face as it continues to ignore the needs of the growing Windows Phone population? Let us know below.
Thanks Mark for the tip.