Amazon shutdown on Ads for Alexa Skills following changes in policy



Third-party developers who monetize their applications via Alexa Skills, through the use of “Sponsored Messages" has been hit by series of policy changes at Amazon on how advertising will be supported within Alexa’s voice-enabled apps.

Alexa Skills afforded developers ways to make money from their creatives, through collective Skills ad network, with group of apps sold collectively to brands that needed to reach consumers through Amazon’s connected speakers, like the Echo, and other Alexa-powered devices.

But, Amazon had discreetly updated its Alexa Skills Developer agreement in April to further restrict ads usage in Skills.

Before the ban, startups that used the Alexa app home cards for ads, popped up in the Alexa app to describe the Skill in question or text-based content enhancement, includes: Federated Media, XAPPmedia, TWiT.tv, Appbly and various independent Alexa "Skills" developers.

The ban is with the exception of streaming music, radio and flash briefing Skills (news briefings) where advertisements weren't the base functions.

While there are still few ways for developers to make money from Skills today, just in May, Amazon started payments for developers of Game Skills in an effort to seed the market with their popular Skill category.

Also, some developers may use a freemium or paywall model via account linking, though trying to convert Skills users to a paid, full version of a Skill is hard work, as the worse case is that users won't give favorable reviews.

Albeit, most developers are not happy with Amazon’s policy changes. The company, however, believes the policy changes were necessary to preserve a good consumer experience for Alexa users.
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