Adopting VAST 4.2 Should Be a Priority for Advertisers & Broadcasters

Why it’s Time to Adopt VAST 4.2 

IAB Canada sits on the frontlines of ad delivery complaint reports and in recent months, we have seen an uptick. It’s time for video ad stakeholders to update their stacks by implementing the latest technology available. The most recent Video Ad Serving Template (VAST) 4.2 was launched over two years ago and has lagged in adoption. In 2021, it is increasingly important for advertisers and broadcasters to place its implementation squarely on their 2021 roadmaps. 

Replacing VAST 2 and 3, the updated template along with the Secure Interactive Media Interface Definition (SIMID) helps to provide the industry with a much-needed refresh on the video stack.   

VAST 4.2 modernizes the delivery of video ads in several ways. By separating a media file from the code, the template allows for a simplified, safe and transparent delivery which results in increased platform coverageThe template also reduces errors and enables better workflows.  

The new template addresses several challenges experienced with earlier standards. In fact, most of the complaints received today regarding poor video execution, are a direct result of outdated systems causing poor mobile user experiences and over-the-top (OTT) problems like live generally poor quality creative, streaming difficulty and the inability to pass along client context without cookies 

Simplification of Video Ad Delivery 

  • VAST is used for delivery 
  • VPAID has been replaced by SIMID and OMID 
  • SIMID (used for interactive ads and is focused on security) 
  • Open Measurement Interface Definition (OMID) used for verification  

Simply put, VAST 4.2 delivers a better overall user experience than VPAID and eases the management of video ad delivery. When adopted, it will save time and money while reducing the amount of creative errors by allowing the player to control delivery. 

The timing for adoption could not be better as IAB Tech Lab just released OM for web (providing consistency across apps and web video) which was needed (along with SIMID) to fully replace VPAID. As with all updates to software, hardware or frameworks, holding out on implementation can create a risk of an increased investment to adopt to later versions.  

IAB Canada will provide an information session for publishers and advertisers looking for guidance on the implementation in the coming weeks. We hope this will be the year that video delivery rises to the high quality it is capable of – at scale.