Ad blocking apps only hit independent app producers

More startling revelations from the AdBlock Plus saga

block all those annoying online ads

It appears that the real victims in the fight to prevent adverts appearing on the screens of mobile phones are the independent app producers. As one such app producer revealed, “I have made and launched two very successful games, for free. I have over 200,000 installs, and I should be making half-decent revenue from advertising. Unfortunately, because of ad blockers, my revenue is very small. Like, $20 a day.” GoMo News was researching further revelations about the true nature of ad blocking apps when it came across the above confession on the Phonearena web site here. This follows the disclosure that most big names in mobile advertising are on the ‘whitelist’ for the AdBlock Plus app anyway.

If you wanted to block those ‘annoying’ ads appearing on your mobile phone’s screen, then you’d hope big names like, Amazon,, Doubleclick, and Yahoo – along with Google itself – would be included.

Wrong. A kind GoMo News reader pointed us to the actual text on the AdBlock Plus web site here which lists those on the ‘whitelist’.

All of those names are there. Now, although the standard mobile AdBlock Plus app doesn’t give you the chance to edit the  whitelist, you can disable it.

Or can you? GoMo News notes that when we configured the AdBlock Plus Android app to ‘block all ads’ it indicated that they were all blocked over Wi-fi.

Which implies that ads might not be blocked over cellular data connexions at all. Curious.

Now if you go back to March 2013 when the AdBlock Plus app was removed by Google from the Play app store this is what the company itself said …

The apps – and not just AdBlock Plus, were removed from Play for “interference with another service or product in an unauthorised manner.”

We now believe that Google was totally aware with what so-called ad blockers were actually doing. And they certainly weren’t blocking all ads as the typical user would believe.

GoMo News has searched in vain for a way to download one of the other three ad blocking apps that were banned at the same time.

We got close to obtaining AdAway but had no joy with AdFree and AdBlocker which were named at the time by TechCrunch here.

At the time of Google’s ad blocking app removals, AdBlock Plus co-founder, Till Faida, told The Salon here that, “it is safe to say that business reasons are behind the move.”

“This is what is so concerning: – Google largely controls what kind of information and products people have access to on the Internet,” he added.

“If people accept that Google’s business interests decide over the accessibility of products and information, who knows how far this will be going?”

What Faida failed to mention, as we revealed here, is that AdBlock Plus itself is a commercial venture and getting thrown off Google Play wasn’t a helpful move for it at all.

In fact, GoMo News has yet to find an explanation of why the organisation makes an Android version of its app available from its own web site but no such version for iOS exists. Strange.

Given that advertising over the mobile web will soon overtake the value of advertising over the desktop related web (Don’t forget that we’re including tablets as well as smartphones), we can see big holes appearing in AdBlock Plus’ strategy.

Particularly since we suspect that it has at most only two million users who’ve downloaded the Android version of it software.

See also …

AdBlock Plus responds to “rather unfair article” by GoMo
AdBlock founder Faida calls for transparency in ad industry
Adblock Plus claims 69% object to ads appearing in Facebook mobile app
Adblock Plus adblocking software still desktop centric
Adblock Plus warns that 44% have heard of adblocking apps

About Tony Dennis

Tony is currently Editor of GoMobile News. He's a veteran telecoms journalist who has previously worked for major printed and online titles. Follow him on Twitter @GoMoTweet.
This article was published in Mobile Ad&Mktg, google, mobile news and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Ad blocking apps only hit independent app producers

  1. John says:

    It’s rather odd that you’d mention iOS as you do given that there’s been coverage that ABP is developing a browser for iOS. Also it would be nice if you’d go into the basis of why your developer anecdote is representative of a less than decent income (installs sure, but how about usage?) and/or how he knows ad blockers are to blame. I don’t know why you’re so worked up about ABP, but you should at least do some basic research on your writings if you’re purporting to be a journalist.


  3. admin says:

    “ABP is developing an iOS browser” is it? That show just how much ABP knows about the mobile industry if it still isn’t out – what a year after the release of the Android app? And thank you for “purporting” to know something about the subject.

  4. Pingback: AdBlock comes out for Safari – but not iPhoneGoMo News

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