Google Takes Down Ad Blocking Apps From Its Play Store

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As we’ve learnt earlier, Google is shutting down Google Reader, likely the most popular RSS Reader. This move from Google shocked many users and the search engine company have received a backlash from its user base because of such a decision. As a topping on the cake, Google has made one more decision that many of us are going to hate. The company has started to ban ad blockers from its Play Store. This means that ad blocker apps like Adblock Plus, AdAway or Ad Blocker can not be downloaded and installed from Google Play anymore.

Developers of the apps received notifications for violating section 4.4 of the Android Developer Distribution Agreement which says:

4.4 Prohibited Actions. You agree that you will not engage in any activity with the Market, including the development or distribution of Products, that interferes with, disrupts, damages, or accesses in an unauthorized manner the devices, servers, networks, or other properties or services of any third party including, but not limited to, Android users, Google or any mobile network operator. You may not use customer information obtained from the Market to sell or distribute Products outside of the Market.

For the time being, installed applications will continue to work but will not receive updates anymore. Most of the developers have asked users to get the app directly from the developers website instead of installing from Play Store. Users will manually need to update the app from developers website, but not all developers offer any such option at the moment. It will not be a surprise if these apps come with an automatic update feature in future versions.

Note that if you are thinking to install Ad blocker apps from a Developer’s site, then you will first need to navigate to: Settings > Applications and checkmark “Unknown sources”. Users need to follow this step because the app is installed outside the Play Store.

But what is the reason behind Google’s such move? Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is first and foremost an advertising company, and the company gets much of its revenue from ads. Users who use ad blocker reduce the revenue of the company and now with ad blockers begin banned from the Play Store,  Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has got a chance to increase revenue. Sadly, that is the honest truth behind Google’s latest move.

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