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Google pulls Samsung-backed ad blocker from the Play Store

It might not like Samsung's approach to ad blocking, though not for the reason you might suspect.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
February 3, 2016
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Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Samsung may have stirred up more trouble than it was expecting when it started blocking ads in its Android web browser. Google has pulled Adblock Fast, the app partner for Samsung's feature, from the Play Store. Allegedly, the title (made by Rocketship Apps) violates Google Play's policies by interfering with other apps and services. That's a bit baffling, since Adblock Fast uses Samsung's own code and had the Korean firm's explicit blessing -- Adblock Plus is using the same code and hasn't run into trouble. The concern, as you can imagine, is that Google might be retaliating against Samsung for daring to hurt its bread-and-butter ad business.

Don't cry "conspiracy!" just yet, though. While Google isn't directly commenting on the removal, The Next Web hears that the concern may be how Samsung does ad blocking, rather than the fact that it's blocking ads at all. If so, Samsung could theoretically solve its problems by merging Adblock Fast's technology into the browser. For now, at least, you'll have to look at alternatives if you just can't stand web marketing on your Galaxy S.

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