Google removes ad blocking software from its store

According to several sources, Google has started sending notifications to developers with ad-blocking software in the Google Play Store regarding these apps’ removal. Players like AdBlock, AdAway, AdFree and more are being whisked away.

Anyone surprised? Google will let all the Malware in the world in the store, but not ad blocking software.

  • Lets see, they allow porn, hacking tools, and malware in their store, but they draw the line at ad blockers?

    • Free apps rely on ads, mostly. This isn’t just about Google but independent developers as well. Read the actual changes from Google.

      Porn is a personal preference. Jobs didn’t want it so it is now “bad” for App stores but means nothing when you can set a parental control level.

      • I’m sorry, but this warrant a completely trollish “BUT OPEEEEEEN!”

        • Play Store was never open source but Android is.

          • I understand that. The thing is, it’s what Google will fall back to as an explanation when someone tries to call their bullshit, but they don’t make this clear when criticising their competitors. When they’re doing that, they bank on the fact that most people will think they’re the good guys, not restricting what people can do with their smartphones, unlike evil Apple.

            That’s why I posted the comment.

          • Where/when were they unclear? If they never state the Play Store as an open playground, how did anyone get confused into thinking it was?

            Yes, they have noted the Play Store does not push “personal” agendas on their users like the App Store but never have they said it was without restrictions. Google has removed many apps from the store for violations.

          • Exactly my point: the Play Store is just as closed down as the iOS App Store. Hell, it’s Google’s store and they can damn well do with it what they want. The problem is that they’re not dispelling the ‘open myth’ they created regarding the Play Store. They’re not doing so because it suits them.

          • “Just as” is a far stretch. The rules are really different, especially for developers. Do they both have restrictions? Yep. Are they the same? Some are but iOS has more.

            What myth? The one created by media/people or by Google? The Play Store is open (not open source) from a developer perspective because you can sign up and launch an app in however long it takes you to fill out the app details and upload the APK.

      • gjgustav

        No, blocking porn was a smart business decision, given the stupidity and self-righteousness of the market. Lots of people simply won’t shop at a place that sells porn.

        Notice Google doesn’t sell porn on their store either. And Blockbuster (back when video rental was viable) didn’t have a porn section.

      • Fully agree on the need for ad-sponsored apps, for Android this is vital and understandable (even if I am not interested in such apps myself, I prefer to pay).

        But most ad blockers (those that do not rely on a global proxy server setting for filtering) would not affect real “apps”, only Web pages (or “apps” that are nothing else than a Web page in a container; maybe, not 100% sure how the embedded browser views in Android do work).

    • Lukas

      What do you have against porn and hacking tools?

  • Yes, Google are ‘open’ and they have no restrictions with their play store, unlike the closed system of Apple – so much freedom with Google!!!

    • Who ever said there were no restrictions? They are clear about them to developers.

      • I think I get it now – you have to follow the guidelines as set out by the company who runs the app store, or your app will be rejected. Sounds very familiar.

        • Yeah, par for the course for Nokia’s Ovi had rules, getjar, iOS App Store, Amazon, etc. Apple didn’t do anything new just different rules. Google is adjusting their rules now as well.

        • You can install any app on your device. You can sell it from anywhere you want.

    • You can install anything you want on your Android device you moron. The play store is under their control.

    • Lukas

      No, Google isn’t “open” because they have no restrictions on their Play store. Nobody ever claimed that.

      Google is open because the source to Android is open. Google is open because you can install apps on Android that don’t come from the Play store. They’re not open because “they have no restrictions with [sic] their play [sic] store”.

  • I’m definitely not surprised by Jim’s take on this. 🙂

  • Mork from Ork

    I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here! Your winnings, sir. Thank you very much. Everybody out at once!

  • Tvaddic

    The malware doesn’t come from the Play store, it comes from when people root their device, download apps from other websites, etc. Not only are the 2 things unrelated, your argument is invalid.

  • They’re diligent about removing malware too.

  • I am only surprised that did not happen earlier. Let’s see when the respective extensions will be removed from the desktop browser…

    Imagine you just spent $1400 on a ChromeBook Pixel from the company that redefined “open”, and all of a sudden you can’t even run an ad blocker on you own device. I smell some class action brewing.

  • Lukas

    Apparently, they removed the ad blocking software because it accessed other applications’ memory. At any rate, since this is Android, you don’t have to go through the Play Store. You can still install these apps just fine.

    If you’re on iOS, on the other hand, good luck. You get the malware in the store, as well, but you have no way of installing any ad blocking software without hacking your phone.

    • There are at least two browsers in the AppStore which do ad blocking just fine. No hacking required.

  • “Open.”

  • gjgustav

    Given that they have fostered an ecosystem of cheap customers who refuse to pay for software, this is a smart move to placate developers. Developers rely on ad revenue to be successful. Without them, there are fewer reasons to choose Android.

    • Please. Stop with the playbook rhetoric. Android users absolutely pay for apps.

      • gjgustav
        • See the problem with that is in the comparison. App Annie is pulling data but they don’t have data for the entire store. There are many factors to consider.

          Some devs come to Android and make their app ad based vs paid so the numbers will be skewed.

          My point: it is a horrible assumption to make purely based on another platform having higher numbers for a small section of apps/developers.

          You can take articles like this ( and argue the opposite. Don’t take random data as proof to a certain group of people’s “cheapness”.

          • gjgustav

            The BGR article you quoted is talking about rate of growth; not actual numbers. Going from 1%-2% is a larger rate of growth than 70%-80% (for example).

            And guess why those devs make their app ad-based vs. paid. Even some of the top selling games on iOS are ad-based on Android.

          • Yes, it is rate of growth.

            iOS has an expectation to pay for apps. On Android, from the earlier days, many devs chose free so folks looked for free alternatives. At this point in Play, it is not the case. Plenty of people are wildly successful with paid apps on Android (even more successful than on iOS in some cases).

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  • lucy Smith

    No, blocking porn was a smart business decision, given the stupidity and self-righteousness of the market.Casquette Snapback