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Preview ads on a phone or tablet with the Creative Preview app

Icon image for the Creative Preview mobile app  

Creative Preview is an Android and iOS mobile app for previewing mobile creatives. Use Creative Preview to test ads on mobile phones and tablets using supported mobile ads SDKs.

Creative Preview works with DoubleClick Studio, Campaign Manager (DCM), Bid Manager, and Ad Exchange. Some preview features (such as the in-app console) are currently only available in certain products. Any limitations are noted below.

Install the app and pair your device

  1. Install the Creative Preview app on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Open the app and sign in with the same account you use with DoubleClick. This will pair the device with your account so that you can push previews to it.
If you don't use DoubleClick, sign in with any email account to add creatives manually.

Change the device name

When you push a creative from a DoubleClick ad product to a device, you'll select the device name to push the preview to. Creative Preview will use the manufacturer's default name, but it's helpful to change this to a friendly nickname so it's easier to identify paired devices.

  1. Tap Menu Menu > Settings Settings.
  2. Tap Device name.
  3. Tap the "Name" line, then enter an easy to remember device nickname.

Push a creative to your paired device

Before you can preview your creative on the Creative Preview app, push the creative from a DoubleClick product using the Push to device or Preview location drop-down at the top of the preview window. After you push a creative, you'll get a notification on your mobile device that the creative was added (if app notifications are enabled).

Preview Ad Exchange video creatives

If you're trying to preview a video creative in Ad Exchange, you'll notice the preview icon is disabled in the creative explorer. Follow these steps to get the preview URL:

  1. Click the buyer creative ID to view the creative details page.
  2. Copy the URL to use in the Creative Preview app, then follow the instructions below.
  3. (Optional) Paste the URL into a QR code generator or URL shortener (such as goo.gl) to make it easier to copy the URL to your phone or tablet.

Add a creative manually

You can add both display and video creatives to the app manually using the creative's URL. URLs must be secure (https://) and must return a valid response.

Add a creative from a URL
  1. Tap Add add creative button, then tap either Display or Video.
  2. Enter a name for the preview.
  3. Enter the creative's URL or tap Scan QR code Scan QR code button in the Creative Preview app.
  4. For display creatives only:
    1. Select the ad type, either "Banner" or "Interstitial". (For expanding creatives, select "Banner".)
    2. Enter the width and height of the creative.
Edit creative settings for manually added creatives
  1. Tap Information Information icon image next to your creative in the Creatives list.
  2. Tap MoreMore> Edit.
  3. Edit the creative's details. When you're done, tap save Save checkmark icon image.

Preview and test your creative

Tap a creative to view and interact with it directly on your mobile device.

Preview a creative in the app

  1. Tap the name of a creative to preview it, or tap the info icon for details and preview settings.
  2. While previewing the ad, interact with it as you normally would, then review events in one of two ways:
    1. Open the console Button that launches the output console in the Creative Preview app.
      If the console button is covering a creative element, you can drag it out of the way. On Android, use a long press to make the button draggable.
    2. Ad events triggered on your phone or tablet are also recorded in the DoubleClick Studio or DCM preview on your desktop if you leave the browser window open. To view event details in the preview window on your desktop, click Show details Show details, then click Event summaryLearn how to test events in DoubleClick Studio
  3. To exit the preview on your mobile device, tap the back button.
If you navigate away from the preview in your desktop browser, events will no longer update in the Event summary. To see events update, click Push to device again, and keep the preview open.
View events using the app's console

To make sure ad events are recording as you interact with your preview, open the console Button that launches the output console in the Creative Preview app.

The console includes Log and Summary views.

  • Use the Log view to see precise event timing. Tap an element in your ad to see an attached event record.
  • Use the Summary view to see all events. This view can help you find events that aren't recording properly.

Availability

The console is only available for:

  • Video previews using the IMA SDK
  • Mobile ad SDK previews pushed from DoubleClick Studio

The console is not not yet available for Bid Manager or Ad Exchange display creatives. To view events while previewing in your mobile web browser, use Studio Preview's Event summary instead.

Supported preview SDKs

Creative Preview supports the following mobile ad SDKs. You can also open display creative previews in your mobile browser using the Mobile Web option.

Display creative SDKs

SDK Name Android iOS Developer guides
Google Mobile Ads checkmark checkmark Android and iOS
Millennial checkmark checkmark Android and iOS
MoPub checkmark checkmark * Android and iOS

* For MoPub on iOS, your creative's URL must return a valid JavaScript response for preview to work.

Video creative SDKs

Video creative previews are displayed as pre-roll ads in Creative Preview. The video ad is shown first, followed by a placeholder content video to simulate the ad experience.

SDK Name Android iOS Developer guides Supported video players
Interactive Media Ads (IMA) * checkmark checkmark Android and iOS View list

* The IMA SDK supports companion ads, but preview of companions is not available in Creative Preview.

Check SDK versions
  1. Tap Menu Menu > Settings Settings.
  2. Tap Default SDK. The version number is shown below the SDK name. 
Switch preview SDKs
  1. Tap the information icon Information icon image next to your creative in the Creatives list.
  2. Tap the SDK to use for preview or tap Mobile Web to view your creative in a browser.
Set your default SDK

By default, Creative Preview will attempt to preview using the Google Mobile Ads SDK. If you prefer, you can choose your own default preview environment.

  1. Tap Menu Menu > Settings Settings.
  2. Tap Default SDK.
  3. Choose the SDK or environment you use most often for preview. When you're done, tap save Save checkmark icon image.

Sync creatives

When you're trying to get your creative's layout and assets just right on your device, you can use the sync feature within the app to grab the latest updates without having to re-push the creative from your desktop. Syncing updates all the creatives on your device.

To sync all creatives in the Creative Preview app, tap moreMore> Sync.

Sync can take a few seconds or a few minutes, depending on how many creatives are on your device. While a sync is in progress, the Sync option in the menu is disabled.

Sync is not yet available for creative previews pushed from Ad Exchange.

Favorites

Use favorites to more easily find your favorite previews. View favorites by tapping menu Menu > Favorites. To return to viewing all creatives, tap menu Menu > Creatives.

Add favorites

Do one of the following:

  • Tap the star next to a creative in the Creatives list.
  • Tap the information icon Information icon image next to your creative in the Creatives list, then tap moreMore> Add to favorites.
Remove favorites

Do one of the following:

  • Tap the star next to a starred creative in the Creatives list.
  • Tap the information icon Information icon image next to your creative in the Creatives list, then tap moreMore> Remove from favorites.
Remove all favorites
  1. Tap Menu Menu > Favorites.
  2. Tap MoreMore> Unfavorite all.

Remove creatives from your device

After you've finished previewing a creative, you can remove it from the app. If you remove a creative by mistake, you can push it from the associated DoubleClick ads product again.

Remove a single creative
  1. Tap Menu Menu > Creatives.
  2. Swipe the creative name to the right.
Remove all creatives
  1. Tap Menu Menu > Creatives.
  2. Tap MoreMore> Remove all.

Clear cache

Creative Preview displays your creative in a web view, just like a browser, but without the usual browser control bar. Just like a browser, you may need to clear the web view's cache to test how your creative behaves the first time it loads. Clearing cache does not remove creatives from your device.

To clear the web view cache in the app, tap moreMore> Clear cache.

Notifications

Notifications let you know when a creative is pushed and ready for preview. You'll see a pop-up when you push a creative. Tap the notification to open the preview.

Android Notifications

Enable or disable notifications

  1. Open the Settings app on your device.
  2. Tap Sound & notification, then App notifications.
  3. Tap Creative Preview.
  4. Adjust your notification settings.
iOS Notifications

Enable or disable notifications

  1. Open the Settings app on your device.
  2. Tap Notifications, then Creative Preview.
  3. Adjust your notification settings.

Device sharing best practices

If you're sharing test devices with your team, here are some tips for managing multiple accounts when using Creative Preview.

Use a shared testing account for your team (recommended)

This is the recommended option. Using a shared account will prevent forgetting to sign out of your individual account when you're finished testing on a shared device.

  1. Set up a testing account and share it with your team.
  2. Give the account access to all of the creative campaigns you want to preview.
  3. Pair the account in Creative Preview on all shared devices.
  4. When you're ready for testing, sign in to the DoubleClick ads product using the account.
  5. Open the creative you want to preview.
  6. Click Push to device (or in DoubleClick Studio, open the Preview location menu) to select the shared device you want to push your creative to.
Sign in to your account each time you use a device

If you're not using a shared testing account, you'll need to add your individual account and sign in each time you want to test on a shared device. Don't forget to remove your account from the device when you finish testing. We also recommend that you turn off auto-sync when you add your account to an Android device to avoid syncing any account data.

Turn off auto-sync on Android devices
  1. On the main Android home screen, tap the "Menu" button.
  2. Open "Settings".
  3. Select "Accounts", "Accounts & Sync", or "Data Synchronization".
  4. Select your Google account. This is usually designated with the Google "g" logo.
  5. Uncheck all account sync options.
 
When you remove your account from a device, all previews are automatically cleared from the Creative Preview app and the device is unpaired from your DoubleClick account.
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