The mobile advertisement-blocking wars took an interesting turn today: Anti-advertising software provider AdBlock just released a browser that blocks ads for Android and iOS. This means that AdBlock, a small company best known for their AdBlock Plus product, beat Apple to producing a mobile browser with the ability to remove mobile ads from users’ experiences.
On Wednesday, industry watchers believe that Apple is unveiling sharply increased ad-blocking ability for Safari in iOS.
Apple’s embrace of ad-blocking tech has led to tension with publishers and advertising firms; although products that block ads have been available for smartphones for quite some time, Apple’s sheer heft means these companies are likely to lose increasingly more eyeballs to ad blockers.
In promotional materials, Adblock stresses that their browser protects users from malware, and–critically–offers users considerable savings on their data plans due to the high amount of bandwidth taken up by visible and invisible mobile advertising.
According to a recent report, the use of ad-blocking software has increased 41% worldwide over the past year and is expected to cost companies almost $22 billion in lost advertising revenue in 2015.