Adblock vs. Adblock Plus: Final Comparison with Pros and Cons

It’s no secret that ad blocking extensions like Adblock, Adblock Plus and Adblock Pro are increasingly becoming popular with more than 200 million active users and its publisher is worth billions of dollars.

Adblock Program
Adblock Program

In fact, as I write this blog post, both Adblock and Adblock Plus have more than 50 million users. I was not really using the adblocker until a few months ago because I rarely click on the ad. Therefore, I argued myself that why should I install an adblock when I do not make any difference?

However, I tried Adblock a few months ago – when YouTube ads became increasingly upset – and immediately felt that it should be for me. The only thing … this extension is not the ad blocking capability I find interesting. But this is something else – which I will explain below.

Adblock and Adblock Plus: A Brief History

As you probably know, Google Chrome has two most popular ad blocking adblock and adblock plugs. How does it matter? Well, it sounds similar but they are independently developed two separate extensions.

Obviously, Adblock was inspired by Adblock Plus when it was only Firefox’s add-on. Now ‘Adblock Plus’ is also available for Google Chrome, Android, Safari, Opera, Internet Explorer etc. and ‘Adblock’ is available for Google Chrome, Safari, Opera and iOS.

Adblock Plus is the most popular Firefox add-on with more than 21 million users (this is the first mover benefit on Mozilla Firefox) and Adblock is the most popular Chrome extension (it has got the first inductive advantage on Google Chrome).

By the way, both Adblock and Adblock Plus claim that this is the most popular ad blocker and has more than 40 million users in both. However, the Adobe Web Store has approximately 2x higher ratings than Adblock Plus on Adblock, so I think it is the most popular ad blocker on Google Chrome.

Adblock Vs Adblock Plus: Features

Once again, for both Chrome and Adblock Plus for Chrome, Adblock displays both basic features (malware protection, number of blocked ads, blacklisting, whitelist) and options (acceptable advertisement, right-click menu) are related.

In fact both use the same filter and they are called EasyList (built by Adblock Plus). It basically means that if Adblock Plus is blocking an advertisement, it will also be blocked by Adblock or vice versa.

That’s not everything! There is also an ugly likeness. Adblock Plus and Adblock are both allowed to be called “non-intrusive advertising”. This means that they do not block ads that are considered acceptable ads and that’s why they’ve whitelisted some advertisers.

Actually, if such reports are true and true, then Google and other big advertisers have paid Adblock Plus to not block their ads. And Adblock Plus itself has revealed that large organizations are giving them a license fee for whitelisting their advertisements.

When it comes to “options”, I think Adblock Plus is a better option for non-tech because their plugin options are very simple and easy to understand. They do not have a ton of customization options and you can easily disable all ads with only one-click (including “non-intrusive ads”). That is, by unchecking “Allow some non-intrusive ads” on the extension options.

In addition, they have options other than clear custom filters and whitelisted domains, and there is also the option to enable / disable right-click the “Block Elements” menu item.

On the other hand, Adblock for Chrome gives you a ton of options and it can really confuse you. Wait, if you enable the “I’m an advanced user, show me advanced options” option on the extension option, they’ll give you even more options.

For example, this gives you additional control over whitelist to specific YouTube channels (perhaps you can support your favorite YouTube in this way), dropbox sync, filter to block social media buttons, etc.

Adblock vs. Adblock Plus: Professional and Opposition

Adblock Plus

Professionals

  • This is an open-source project.
  • It is the most popular browser extension on the web.
  • The options are easy to understand and navigate.
  • It makes the manual whitelist super-easy and it’s a URL to enter your web browser’s address bar.
  • It blocks malware, popups and pop-ups.
  • It blocks advertisements on Facebook and YouTube.

Opposition

  • Advanced options are available but it is hidden.
  • If you want to enable / disable some features, then you need to do it manually. For example, if you want to disable the social media button on websites, then you have to go to Adblock Plus features and click the “Open this dialog” option under “Disable Social Media Button”. Or, you need to know the syntax to create a custom filter.
  • Its “block element” feature (or right-click menu item) is not so useful

AdBlock

Professionals

  • This is the most popular Google Chrome extension.
  • It’s using the same advertising filter which uses Adblock Plus.
  • Its extension button is more useful than Adblock Plus because it gives more choice and greater control over blocking ads.
  • Its right-click menu is super-useful because it can be used to virtually block any element on a web page (that is why select the adblock on Adblock Plus).
  • It blocks malware, popups and pop-ups.
  • It blocks advertisements on Facebook and YouTube.

Opposition

  • It is an open source project but I do not know why they are not disclosing it anywhere on their homepage or Chrome extension page (although they have published source code here).
  • It is becoming more commercial and has some privacy policy concerns (as indicated by Matt @ RedWight).
  • Its options can confuse technical savvy users (especially “filter list” and “customize” options).
  • It gives the option of enabling “advanced options” but this is not effective because most advanced options and filters are not hidden by default.
  • It shows ads that they think are non-infiltrating by default rather than giving them the option to enable it.

Why can not I live online without an ad blocker here

As I mentioned earlier, I have used ad blocker over the years because I was okay with ads (because I do not click on it anyway). And if I wanted to click on an ad, it meant that it was relevant or useful to me.

However, when I installed Adblock, I realized that it not only blocks regular ads (banners, popups, popunders, etc.) but also blocks YouTube video ads. I never imagined that these ads were able to block the blocked extensions video ads.

So I expected this to block only image ads on YouTube because alone was quite upset. In addition, I did not even know the difference between Adblock and Adblock Plus and believe that they are the same. So, in any way I ended up using the first adblock.

Wait, it’s still not the reason why I like ad blocking. This is due to its ability to block specific web page elements. This is an amazing feature that it can only block almost anything on the web page – not just advertising.

For example, if you are an active user on Twitter, you probably know how upsetting their widgets like “Trends,” “Follow Who,” etc. They are not ads and therefore are not blocked by ad blockers.

So when I was playing with “Adblock”, I realized that it can be permanently blocked using the right-click menu. It’s just that we have to identify the right web page element (or those elements will be visible again).

If you are not sure how to accurately block specific web page elements, then using the browser’s browser button is the best way.

 

When you click on your extension icon, a popup opens and gives the option of “Block an ad on this page” (on adblock) or “block element” (on adblock plus) and it can be used It can also be used to identify and block elements on a web page (even if you are not tech-savvy).

And …

Here’s how my Twitter looks with adblock (before blocking custom elements):

 

Here’s how my Twitter looks with adblock (after blocking custom elements):

 

Similarly, my Facebook annoying sidebar is also clean without motivated themes, events or birthdays. And it’s as easy as it is.

Closing thoughts

I had no plans to write a comprehensive blog post about ad blocking. Instead, I just wanted to express my gratitude to Adblock for my “acts” for the “custom blocking” feature.

However, when I started writing, I realized that writing and spreading some words about two most popular browser extensions on the web is justified.

I’m not sure whether ad blocking is a good thing or not. I think the answer is ‘yes’ and ‘no’. This is a good thing for users because the ads are becoming increasingly annoying.

Advertisers can call it targeted ads but they are not In fact, even re-targeted advertising (this should be the most relevant advertisement, is not it?) Are more troublesome than the so-called targeted ads.

In addition, ad blocking enhances the internet experience and also saves some bandwidth (because your web browser does not need to download full web page elements).

Now it’s a bad thing for companies like Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, AOL, Facebook, Amazon etc because they have a ton of advertising-supported products. In fact, advertising is the reason that Google has so many free products and services.

And it is equally bad for big and small publishers because they are supported by all advertisements.

This is being said, perhaps it’s good

Harvilas Meena

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