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posted by martyb on Thursday December 07, @11:55AM   Printer-friendly
from the ad-vanced-protection dept.

Ads are just a fact of life in mobile apps. You can't completely avoid them, but there are some ad implementations that are so annoying that Google has explicitly disallowed them from the Play Store. Remember Airpush? The current advertising scourge is ad-infused lock screens, which have shown up in previously safe apps like ES File Explorer, Peel, and Hotspot Shield VPN. Google has finally listened to our pleading, and lock screen ads are no longer allowed in the Play Store.

Technically, the new policy is a bit more nuanced than "no ads on the lock screen." Here's the new section on Google's developer monetization page.

Lockscreen Monetization

Unless the exclusive purpose of the app is that of a lockscreen, apps may not introduce ads or features that monetize the locked display of a device.

So, an app that bills itself as a photo editor, VPN, or file explorer cannot also cram a new lock screen on your device that's infested with ads. However, an app that is actually a lock screen can still monetize with ads. Presumably, you know what you're getting when you install a lock screen app.


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  • (Score: 2) by isostatic on Thursday December 07, @03:13PM (4 children)

    by isostatic (365) on Thursday December 07, @03:13PM (#606811) Journal

    Just checked through my running apps, not a single ad, and that's on canola iOS. Built in ones don't have ads (including the safari pages I have open - bbc, hackernews, sn, trekbbs, work jira). No ads on Spotify, or the two games (which I bought). The only one that comes close is google maps.

    If I want an app, I will buy it (Catan, TTR, SkyView). If it's free, they make their money from me buying their services (ihg, virgin Atlantic, slack, IRCCloud, Spotify) or selling me to others (google maps).

    Starting Score:    1  point
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  • (Score: 2) by TheRaven on Thursday December 07, @05:15PM (2 children)

    by TheRaven (270) on Thursday December 07, @05:15PM (#606873) Journal
    I take it you don't use the Apple News app? It includes ads.
    sudo mod me up
    • (Score: 2) by isostatic on Friday December 08, @07:45PM (1 child)

      by isostatic (365) on Friday December 08, @07:45PM (#607367) Journal

      Nope, didn't realise it existed. I go to specific websites for news (typically bbc for day-to-day, and buy magazines like economist for more in depth)

      Advertisers pay about 50p to destroy your browsing experience. I'd rather pay. Same with TV. Ads cost me more than the site gets from selling my eyeballs.

      • (Score: 2) by TheRaven on Saturday December 09, @10:42AM

        by TheRaven (270) on Saturday December 09, @10:42AM (#607680) Journal
        You can buy subscriptions within the news app, and the version that it displays is typically lighter in ads than the web page version. It's also pretty good at recommending things outside of your bubble - I get a bunch of articles from right-leaning newspapers on topics that I'm interested in, for example.
        sudo mod me up
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 07, @05:57PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 07, @05:57PM (#606897)

    ^ same here, I just don't download garbageware that wants to spew ads / invade my privacy. Browser works great for most everything, and F-droid has a lot of good open source apps with sane permission requests!