Adblockalypse a year on

It's been a year since Apple announced changes to iOS that would allow iPhone owners to block ads on Safari. How serious has the 'adblockalypse' been?

Adblockalypse a year on

While use of ad-blockers had been on the rise, Apple's announcement catapaulted the issue into the mainstream. At the time, observers predicted the 'adblockalypse' and that consumers would turn on their ad-blockers in droves.

Since then, the industry has rallied to try and deal with ad-blocker usage. 

One in five British adults has an ad-blocker downloaded, according to August IAB figures. That's a significant figure, but there's room for optimism as the number has stayed flat since February - and some people have even uninstalled ad-blocking software.

The latest Marketing Mind podcast, powered by Somethin' Else, explores ad-blocking a year on from Apple's announcement. 

Emma Haslett, digital editor at City AM and co-host of Unregulated: the City AM podcast, discusses how the publisher is tackling ad-blockers.

City AM trialled software to counteract ad-blockers in October 2015 on Firefox, before rolling the service out to other browsers.

Haslett says it's "difficult to say" if counteracting ad-blockers have dented traffic, because the site is growing so quickly. But she also claims 65% of ad-blocking visitors, on average, switch off the software to acccess City AM's site. "People seem fairly willing to comply," she says. You can hear Emma's comments from 6'31.

Also joining is Steve Chester, the IAB's director of data and industry programmes, discussing the IAB's ongoing discussions with mobile operator Three. The operator announced a partnership with ad-blocker software Shine to enable ad-blocking at network-level for all consumers. There's yet to be a full rollout, with trials in June, and the IAB is consulting regulators on whether the move breaches net neutrality rules.

"Our view is clearly to involve them in the industry coalition," says Chester.

"We've been working with regulators, because we believe screening ads should be treated the same way as screening content [...and] that actually breaches net neutrality. We are in discussions with Three and it's a good open dialogue."

Chester's comments on Three start from 23'28.