Apple has confirmed that iOS 9 will allow iPhone and iPad users to block advertisements within the Safari browser for the first time. The news came out as part of a developer notes page, saying that the next version of Safari for iOS will be the first to allow for ad-block extensions.
“The new Safari release brings Content Blocking Safari Extensions to iOS. Content Blocking gives your extensions a fast and efficient way to block cookies, images, resources, pop-ups and other content”, the page said. The notes then get a bit more technical in to exactly how the process works: “Your app extension is responsible for supplying a JSON file to Safari. The JSON consists of an array of rules (triggers and actions) for blocking specified content. Safari converts the JSON to bytecode, which it applies efficiently to all resource loads without leaking information about the user’s browsing back to the app extension.”
It is worth noting that Apple is coming out with its own News app that will be monetised with ads and since it won’t rely on Safari, it won’t be affected by any ad block tools, which makes the whole thing just a tad hypocritical.
Adblock is already commonplace on the desktop and even on Android devices, with the company behind Adblock Plus having launched their own browser for Google’s mobile OS just last month. Now it will spread to iOS as well.
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KitGuru Says: While adverts are a pain, it is important to remember that a lot of the ‘free’ content on the internet would not be around if it weren’t for advertising revenue. Without that, sites like this one would not be able to afford to stick around. That said, subscription models through places like Patreon have become quite the success for quite a few creators, giving them the ability to drop ads entirely.