Apple’s Mobile Ad Blocking Raises More Questions Than Answers

Apple’s Mobile Ad Blocking Raises More Questions Than AnswersAs if the next version of Apple’s iOS (iOS 9) isn’t enough to set tongues to wagging, maybe the loudest squawks are about a new ability for users to employ ad blockers.

In sum, users will be able to avoid advertising in the Safari mobile browser because iOS 9 allows the installation of third-party ad-blocking tools.

“In anticipation of the operating system update, developers across the world are readying ad-blocking applications in hopes they can cash in on the thirst for ad-free mobile browsing,” notes a WSJ report. “Millions of users already block ads on their desktop browsers and interest in the tools is growing, according to some reports. Mobile developers want a piece of the action.”

The WSJ story cites the U.K.’s Dean Murphy, a developer who just wrapped up work on his ad-blocking app, called Crystal. Murphy has reportedly also translated it into seven different languages to increase worldwide appeal.

“Murphy said he plans to submit his blocking software to the App Store as soon as Apple opens up submissions for iOS 9 apps, which he expects will happen in the next few days,” according to WSJ. “He’s hopeful Crystal will be approved by Apple and available for download by Wednesday, for a one-off purchase price between $3 and $5.”

And Murphy isn’t the only developer with his eyes on the ad blocking prize.

“Eyeo, the Germany-based company behind the popular desktop tool AdBlock Plus, has prepared its own, free ad-blocking extension for iOS,” reports WSJ. “The company also plans to submit that application to Apple this week.”

We’ll stay on top of this story and report impacts in the news.

One thing we know already: online publishers and advertising sellers are nervous. Monetizing mobile audiences is not an easy task to begin with — and ad blockers could lead to major revenue fallout.