Just a few days after Google announced that it is launching an ad-blocker inside Chrome, came another blow to media businesses. On June 5, 2017, during Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), it was announced that the latest update to the iPhone giant’s Safari web browser will now block autoplay videos.
Apple has swooped in to fight against autoplay video by adding a feature to its new Safari browser for the upcoming macOS High Sierra desktop operating system. The option lets you keep autoplay videos on pause until you choose to unpause them. The update will roll out with the public beta version of High Sierra in the latter part of this month.
Safari will also include a tracker blocker option to hide people’s internet habits from ad targeting. According to Craig Federighi, SVP of software engineering, this feature will be using machine learning technology to keep digital stalkers away from users.
For users, this is much-welcome news since you no longer have to be annoyed about those videos that just pop up and play out of nowhere. However, for media businesses and content publishers who rely on video ads for revenue, this is a tough blow. More and more users have opted to use ad blockers because people are unhappy with intrusive ads. Publishers have argued that they have no choice since Facebook and Google have taken over the lion’s share in digital advertising market.
It is still unclear whether these updates will be implemented on the mobile version of Safari. But, such moves just show that Apple doesn’t give second thoughts about driving away advertisers if it will be good for the users.