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Adblock Browser for Android & iOS launched; publisher implications

AdblockPlus (one of the saviours of the Internets) has released a mobile browser for Android and iOS yesterday. This is after Eyeo, the company which makes the extension for browsers, encountered problems in creating adblocking software for mobile devices. The Adblock browser allows the company to integrate adblocking into the browsing experience, given the limited extension environments (Firefox is an exception because Adblock Browser is based on Firefox for Android). The company, whose open source browser was in beta for a couple of months, said in May that it encountered 2 problems it could not solve: The Google Play store threw us out for “interference with another service or product”. Doing anything on mobile that doesn’t appear in the major app stores is, unfortunately, pretty hard. We’re practically invisible to the vast majority of mobile users. Adblock Plus for Android can only block ads over HTTP (i.e. unencrypted) connections. We were always quite unhappy with this – we want to protect our users’ privacy, not hurt it by encouraging unencrypted connections. The first problem Adblock is facing manifests itself on the Play Store: If you search for “Adblock browser”, it actually throw up results for CM Browser, Firefox for Android, AD Blocker (not the same company), AirPush Detector etc, quite surprisingly, given that the query is pretty direct. Eyeo had first tested Adblock for mobile in 2013, but Google had pulled the app from its store for “interference with another service or product in an unauthorized manner.” It said that…

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I'm a MediaNama alumna from 2015-16 (remember TinyOwl?) now back to cover e-services like food and grocery delivery, app based transport and policies, platforms and media in India.

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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