Few things are as necessary when browsing the internet as ad blockers. They’re not only helpful for preventing you from seeing distracting ads, but they also come with tons of other features that streamline your internet-browsing. Anyone who remembers the early days of the internet knows how incredible pop-up blockers seemed when they smoothed out the overall browsing experience. Ad blockers are essentially more advanced versions of the same tools.
What is an Ad Blocker?
Ad blockers are fairly self-explanatory: they block advertisements. Depending on which one you use, they achieve this through a variety of methods. The most common ones block connections between your system and the ad servers while removing the element on a webpage. Essentially, this means the ad never exists on your system. To know what connections are ads, ad blockers rely on community-managed lists of all of the most common ad sources.
Benefits of Ad Blockers
Blocking ads can have many benefits, some of which aren’t as obvious as you may think.
Cleaner Browsing: Perhaps the most direct benefit of using an ad blocker is that it cleans up most websites. Almost every site becomes streamlined and more user-friendly just by removing the ads. Many ad blockers also allow you to manually block obnoxious cosmetic elements on webpages, such as large banners.
Safer Browsing: Ads don’t just mess with the visual flow of a site, they’re also potentially harmful. Malvertising, short for malicious advertising, is a method of delivering harmful software through ads and other web elements. Ad blockers block the connections to these sources and prevent them from downloading anything to your system.
Faster Browsing: Not everyone has a high-speed connection. Plus, there are many areas where higher-speed networks aren’t even available. Every ad is more data that you have to load. Additionally, many sites prioritize loading ads before any of the actual content, slowing the process even further. Ad blockers allow most pages to load significantly faster.
Choose Who You Support: Very little “free” content on the internet is free. One of the ways that most sites make money is through delivering ads to their users. If there is a site or content creator that you want to support, you can simply disable your ad blocker for them while leaving it on for sites you don’t feel comfortable supporting.
Protect Your Privacy: Did you know that most websites know a lot about you? Most sites track things like your browsing habits, your system specifications, and other information. This is how companies know exactly what advertising to give you. While ad blockers can’t prevent this entirely, they can stop advertisers from tracking you across different sites and can disable some of the other ways that companies spy on you.
Popular Ad Blockers
You have an endless number of choices available when it comes to ad blockers. However, when it comes to customizability, trustworthiness, and protecting your privacy, two stand out.
uBlock Origin: By far, the most popular ad-blocking extension is uBlock Origin, due in part to its reliability and low memory usage. It’s also open-source, meaning that anyone is free to observe the code to ensure it remains effective and trustworthy. However, it is not as user-friendly as other options. There are tools with similar names, so make sure you are getting this exact extension from its GitHub or your browser’s extension list.
AdBlock: This is one of the most common and best choices for blocking ads. AdBlock is simple, reliable, and customizable.
Some VPN companies provide ad blockers, which can be helpful if you already use those services. Other popular safety programs such as Malwarebytes and many antiviruses have browser extensions for ad blocking, but these generally use more system resources.
At the end of the day, browsing the web becomes significantly better when you use an ad blocker. Thanks to OneLaunch being a chromium-based browser, you can choose any ad blocker you like and can install it with ease. Enjoy a safer, easier way to browse.