Changes to Custom Playback in the IMA HTML5 SDK

We've made some changes to the HTML5 SDK's handling of custom playback. Currently if a custom video element is passed into the IMA HTML5 SDK, it’s always used to play video ads. This behavior is now changing; soon we’re going to use custom playback only when necessary (e.g., on devices such as iPhones or pre-4.0 Android phones where UI elements cannot be rendered over a video player) rather than whenever a video tag is passed in. We recommend all implementations now pass in the custom playback elements so that ads are supported in those environments. For more info on the change and code snippets to help you upgrade, see upgrading to the new custom playback.

Upcoming changes to custom click tracking element

The SDK's usage of the custom click tracking element is also changing. Currently, if a custom click tracking element is passed in to the SDK, it will always be wired to handle clicks. Soon, the custom click tracking element will only be used if the ad is a non-AdSense/AdX creative and the environment is iPhone or pre-4.0 Android. Please do not render your custom click tracking element over your video player as it may prevent clickthroughs after this change is put into place because it may intercept clicks on the SDK-rendered elements. We only recommend passing in a custom click tracking element if you are showing non-AdSense/AdX creatives and want a click tracking element in iPhone and pre-4.0 Android devices. See opt_clickTrackingElement under ima.AdDisplayContainer for more information.

What do you need to do now?

  1. Effective immediately, all implementation should pass in the custom playback element to ensure support of IMA video ads across all devices. Please read our guide on Upgrading to the new custom playback.
  2. If you are using a custom click tracking element:
    • Make sure it doesn't render over your video player.
    • In the ad STARTED event, show your custom tracking element if AdsManager.isCustomClickTrackingUsed() is true, and hide it otherwise.
    • In the ad COMPLETE event, hide your custom tracking element if appropriate.

How can I tell if the IMA SDK is using custom playback or custom click tracking?

Release 3.1.62 of the IMA HTML5 SDK introduces AdsManager.isCustomPlaybackUsed() and AdsManager.isCustomClickTrackingUsed() which you can use in your player to see if the SDK is currently using the passed in custom video player or custom click tracking element.

As always, if you have any questions,feel free to contact us via the support forum.