Ad Blockers

I’ve been thinking a lot about ad blockers. I have always resisted using an ad blocker on the view that I value the web and mobile services I use and they need to make money somehow.

But there is a view that ads are unwanted and by opting out of them, you are forcing web and mobile services to come up with a better business model. Of course, I also wonder how many people that use an ad blocker would come out of pocket a couple bucks a month to pay for an ad-free version of the services they use. Pandora has had an ad-free version of its music service for years and I believe (not sure) that only about 5% of its users opt for that.

The idea of taking the business model decision out of the service’s hands and putting it into the user’s hands is interesting. If an ad blocker came with a micro-payments service that automatically paid the web or mobile service the same average revenue per user (ARPU) it was making via ads, that would be cool. That is quite possible with bitcoin and I am expecting we will see something like that emerge in the coming years.

I also think we will see browsers and possibly even mobile phones come with ad blockers built in. Would you swap browsers to get built in ad blocking? Would you swap mobile phones to get built in ad blockers?

One thing is for sure, ad blocking is not going away. If anything, it is growing appreciably.

So, let’s end this with a poll? Do you use an ad blocker, and if so, where?