When it comes to ad placements inside applications and games, the more you know the better it is before you make a plunge and decide to check something out. Maybe you're willing to pay $5 or $10 for a good app or game, but you're appalled by the idea of also having to endure ads on top of that, or maybe you're just the kind of person who prefers free and ad-free software. Knowing beforehand if the app or game you're about to download contains ads can go a long way in setting the right expectations, that's the point David argued many years ago, and Google in all its wisdom decided to follow his advice (or you know, common sense).
Late last year, developers started getting emails from Google telling them that they have to sign into their Developer Console and declare whether their apps contain ads or not. That email said that, "Early next year, users will start to see the “Ads” label on apps that contain advertising, both inside and outside Designed for Families."
Well, late April doesn't qualify as "early next year" in our books, but at least the designation has started showing up on the Play Store. It's that "Contains ads" text, right below the Install / Buy / Open button and next to "In-app purchases" (if they're applicable). It seems like a server-side change because it's appearing on one device but not another using the same Google account. I'm not seeing it on my phones or tablets, and neither are a few Android Police members, so it could still be a very small rollout for now.
Oh and if you're wondering what qualifies as "ads" in Google's book, there's a support document with an explanation and a few examples that you can check out.
- Stefan Constantinescu