Mobile Minute: Mobile Ad Blocking Growth Matters Less Than You Think

John Koetsier

In our last Mobile Minute, we talked about how mobile ad blocking downloads are spiking, fast. This week, we dive into why fast growth of mobile ad blocking might not be as scary as some marketers — and publishers — might fear.

Mobile ad blocking is growing fast, but most apps and browsers that block ads on mobile only work for the mobile web. And as most mobile marketers know, people don’t spend a ton of time on the mobile web; they spend 80-90% of their time in apps. To block ads in apps, you’re looking at a much more risky proposition: using a very invasive ad blocking app on a jailbroken iPhone or rooted Android device that redirects all web and app data traffic through a server that tries to strip out advertising from your web and app experience.

Clearly, that has significant security implications.

Tackling Mobile Ad Blocking

Advertisers and publishers aren’t completely out of the woods, however. This fast growth in mobile ad blocking apps and browsers is a big red flag that people are not super-happy about the current level of ad-based monetization on the sites and apps they use on their smartphones.

Fixing that, either via Facebook Instant Articles or Google’s Advanced Mobile Pages or another solution, is critical for the long-term health of the industry. (Get our free full report on mobile ad blocking here.)

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John Koetsier

Before acting as a mobile economist for TUNE, John built the VB Insight research team at VentureBeat and managed teams creating software for partners like Intel and Disney. In addition, he led technical teams, built social sites and mobile apps, and consulted on mobile, social, and IoT. In 2014, he was named to Folio's top 100 of the media industry's "most innovative entrepreneurs and market shaker-uppers." John lives in British Columbia, Canada with his family, where he coaches baseball and hockey, though not at the same time.

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