You may or may not have already heard, but one of the big features arriving on the 9th September with the newest iteration of iOS is the ability to use Ad Blockers with Safari on your iPhone and/or iPad.
Now Ad Blockers are nothing new in their own right, and you may already be using the likes of Adblock or Ublock on your desktop browser, but the ability to use them with mobile browsers is quite exciting.
‘Adios’ to ads
In June Apple announced that the upcoming iOS 9 would feature the ability to install ad blockers from the app store to be used with Safari.
Most websites use ads as their primary source of revenue but more and more sites are taking it to the extreme which is harmful to the user experience.
When iOS 9 is released, I imagine that there will be a flood of Ad Blockers to the App Store. Today I am going to review Adios, a free Ad Blocker developed by Armand Grillet and demonstrate why you should install one as soon as possible.
Need for speed
While mobile networks have evolved and offer faster speeds, most of the contracts available haven’t and still impose low usage limits.
Ads on modern websites can increase page load times by huge amounts, whilst also increasing the data usage. I tested 2 popular blogs, 9t05mac and iMore, to see how much ads affected their site performance and you can see the results below.
You will instantly notice the biggest difference is the page requests, these requests are ads and tracking which are loaded alongside websites when not using AdBlocker, increasing page load time. When your favourite websites are taking forever to load, this is probably a big part of the problem.
The other huge advantage to using an Ad Blocker is giving your eyes a break, just have a look at the side by side comparison of The Verge, first without and then with an Ad Blocker. You’ll notice that without an Ad Blocker, nearly half of the screen is used by an ad.
Currently, the only way to install Adios is to be using iOS 9 Beta 5 and sending your iDevice UDID and email to the developer via his Twitter account (@Adios_app). He would then generally send you an email with a link to install the app before having to configure Adios.
The first steps when configuring Adios require you to choose two different countries to download the blocking lists relevant to those countries languages, and then choosing if you would like to block anything else such as social media buttons or rogue scripts.
I did actually reach out to the developer on Twitter to ask for the ability to add more than two countries to which he replied very quickly that he is going to work on it. 👍
As soon as the app has finished downloading the filter lists, you need to activate the app in Safari by going to Settings➞Safari➞Content Blockers and allowing Adios.
And that’s all, from now on you shouldn’t see any more advertisements. If however you wish to support certain websites you can always long hold on the Safari refresh button and select to reload the page without Adios.
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