Google yesterday confirmed that Chrome is getting a built-in ad blocker that will block all the ads on a site (including Google’s own ads) if just one ad doesn’t meet certain standards. That’s right: Google, the company that makes the majority of its money from advertising, is building an ad blocker.
This alone is crazy. Google already has the world’s most popular browser and it’s plowing ahead building arguably the only feature that would really differentiate other browsers. I find it astounding that none of the other major browser makers managed to beat Google to the punch.
There is still time for Apple, Microsoft, and Mozilla to act. Google’s solution isn’t coming to Chrome until “early 2018,” a timeframe that could easily slip. Delivering an ad blocker directly in Safari, Edge, or Firefox this year could help these browsers in their fight with Chrome.
And yet, I don’t expect any of these companies to do anything but eventually follow in Google’s footsteps.
Apple moves way too slowly with Safari updates. Some have even gone as far to call Safari the new IE. Still, Apple loves playing up the security and privacy features of its macOS and iOS devices, slamming Google at every opportunity. It makes plenty of sense for Safari to have some sort of built-in ad blocker that not only protects users but also hurts Google’s bottom line.
I also don’t really expect Microsoft will do anything in time, despite the rumor of a native ad blocker in Edge back in March 2016. The company has certainly sped up its browser development compared to the IE days, but Edge is still only updated twice a year along with Windows 10. And the features in this year’s second release, the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, have already been announced.
Firefox Tracking Protection
That leaves Mozilla, the only company I can feasibly see not only getting something ready in time, but making sure it’s superior to what Chrome will have. Firefox could indeed steal…