Is Apple changing the web, or hitting Google’ strongholds!

I don’t know if you’ve ever thought of it this way, but I think the one that would walk out of the ad-blocking war with the heaviest losses would be Google.

Yes, Apple is pleasing its users who needed this long-awaited option very badly. And Yes, this move would hurt lots of content creators that mobile ads are their bread and butter. But it would hurt Google the most. Why? For the reasons below:

– Apple is introducing improved experience for its users handing them power, and doing this it’s strengthening its eco-system too. And here lies the real danger, cause Google who banned the ad-blocker apps from its Play store in 2013 – and it’s rumored that it tried to pay Adblock plus to whitelist its ads – is gonna be, somehow, forced to improve its user experience as well, and since doing that would cost it a lot, So, it has no option but to figure a humane solution for its Display network, – which is one of its major revenue streams – valuing user experience over the advertiser and publisher dreams. Because agree with it or not, the way the ads being forced on us is inhuman at all. And in my humble opinion, it’s killing the industry more than benefiting it. Nobody is ever happy with feeling besieged.

– On the other hand, Ad-block usage grew by nearly 70% between June 2013 – June 2014. And guess what, 18 to 29 year olds represent the highest proportion that are using various ad blocking softwares. That’s about 41%.

– Add to that, Ad-block went mainstream and there’re about 200m active ad-block users around the world if not much more by now.

– And finally, the ads represent %99 of Google’s revenue. I think this’s a good reason for Google to do something right about it.

Google revenue chart

Ad-blockers & Publishers

Publishers are nervous and it’s totally understood, because like it or not, the ads were and still the main reason we’re still getting free content. But what about the users? Those who were clueless about how to get rid of those unwelcome visitors cluttering their screens. Who would give a darn when it’s about revenues. So, forgive me if I don’t feel much sympathy.

I think reading what Marco Arment, who developed one of the most popular ad blocking apps said would make the aspects of the game a bit clearer for you. “Ad-blockers come with an important asterisk: while they do benefit a ton of people in major ways, they also hurt some, including many who don’t deserve the hit.” he said. (You can read the full post here…)

Arment pulled his app “Peace” from the app store, which came just 3 days after the app launched. His point was that, the app wasn’t fair, especially, it offered no advanced options. It simply blocks ‘em all.

Anyway the other ad-blockers are giving you the option to whitelist your favorite publishers. But guess what! Ironically, Adblock Plus, for instance, lets Microsoft, Amazon, Google, and roughly 70 other companies pay to be whitelisted by default. Not only that, but It’s proposing other fellow ad-blocker apps his new business model!

In my opinion, Ad-blocker apps will continue making money, make no mistake. Users will rely on them happily, No consolation for publishers who have got to figure better ways for making money.

And helping you visualising it, here’re the old, new, and expected monetising models:

The old model: More content, more money = happy publisher!

Old content ads model

The new model: Money goes to the Ad-Blocker, and a cold kiss to the publisher!

Current content ads model

Expected model: Quality wins, but we have tricks!

Expected content ads model

Don’t hesitate to join the discussion, sharing your point of view in the comments, and feel free to follow me on Twitter and like my Facebook page for more discussions to come.

 

Resources:

http://blog.pagefair.com/2014/adblocking-report/

http://www.foxbusiness.com/technology/2015/09/28/apples-ad-blocking-is-smart-strategy-not-mobile-armageddon/

http://time.com/4052033/apple-iphone-ios-9-ad-blockers/

https://investor.google.com/financial/tables.html

 

 

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