Adblock Plus Returns To Android, Arrives On iOS

The controversial open-source project Adblock Plus, the mobile extension that blocks annoying online adverts, has returned to the Google Play Store, and officially launched for Apple iOS devices.

Adblock Plus, along with other ad blocking services, had been removed from the Google Play Store in March 2013, with Google citing “interference with another service or product in an unauthorised manner” as the reason.

And the good news continues for users of Apple devices with the announcement that Adblock Plus is now also available on the iTunes store.

Return From Exile

Adblock Plus is a free browser extension that prevents online ads from being displayed on your browser.

The app has been downloaded more than 400 million times so far, and is said to load web pages faster, save battery life, and can even prevent malware disguised as ads from infiltrating your device.

These features have unsurprisingly made it very popular with its users, but less so by publishers. Last month, a report suggested that online publishers could lose out on $21.8 billion (£14.1bn) of advertising revenue in 2015 due to the increasing use of ad blocking software.

In July, a Canadian university study has found that using the Adblock Plus browser extension can save between 25 and 40 percent network bandwidth if deployed across an internal enterprise network.

Eyeo the parent company of AdBlock Plus, successfully defended itself in a German court for the second time in April this year, after two German companies said the tool should not be allowed to block ads on websites owned by the plaintiffs.

And now the tool is officially back on the Google Play Store, for all Android devices.

Adblock Browser for Android has been in beta since late May, with well over 300,000 people downloading the beta in the browser’s first week.

“Adblock Plus is very excited and grateful to have our app, Adblock Browser for Android, available in the Google Play Store,” said Till Faida, co-founder of Adblock Plus. “As annoying and irritating ads have spread fast to mobile devices, we are still championing the user, offering the ability to block ads and thereby giving them faster browser speeds and longer battery life, not to mention keeping them safe from malvertising exploits.”


Today’s announcements also meant that Eyeo was able to beat Apple to the punch, as the iPad maker has already revealed that its next version of its mobile operating system, iOS 9, will feature an adblocker built into the Safari web browser.

“Now that we’re in the App Store with Adblock Browser for iOS, all the speculation can end,” said Till Faida. “It has been very important for us to deliver our ad-blocking app to our iOS users who do more and more web surfing from mobile devices.”

“With the popularity of the iOS platform in places like the US, we considered it critical to offer an app in the Apple App Store,” Faida said. “We’re thankful to Apple for working with us on this project and we look forward to their new iOS 9, which will give web developers additional ad-blocking tools. It’s a big step for this industry.”

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Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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  • is it irony that this very website when checking this article had a pop up ad that covered the entire screen until I found the "X" button. This is why I use a white list on my home computer. Too many websites out there have just moved websites inside their pages instead of outside of the page. Bah humbug.

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