Chrome to Block Battery-Sucking Ads in August Update

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Chrome plans to start blocking resource-heavy ads that drain a lot of battery in August, Google announced today on its Chromium blog (via VentureBeat). Chrome will block ads that mine cryptocurrency, are badly programmed, or are unoptimized for network usage.

We have recently discovered that a fraction of a percent of ads consume a disproportionate share of device resources, such as battery and network data, without the user knowing about it. These ads (such as those that mine cryptocurrency, are poorly programmed, or are unoptimized for network usage) can drain battery life, saturate already strained networks, and cost money.

In order to save our users’ batteries and data plans, and provide them with a good experience on the web, Chrome will limit the resources a display ad can use before the user interacts with the ad. When an ad reaches its limit, the ad’s frame will navigate to an error page, informing the user that the ad has used too many resources.

Chrome plans to limit the resources that an ad can use before the user interacts with the ad, and when that limit is hit, the ad’s frame will redirect to an error page to let the user know that the ad has eaten up too many resources.

Google says that it extensively measured the ads in Chrome, targeting the most “egregious” ads that use more CPU or bandwidth than 99.9 percent of all detected ads for that resource.

Chrome will have thresholds that allow for 4MB of network data or 15 seconds of CPU usage in any 30 second period, or 60 seconds of total CPU usage before an ad is blocked. Just 0.3 percent of ads exceed this threshold, but today, account for 27 percent of network data used by ads and 28 percent of all ad CPU usage.

Google will experiment with the changes for the next several months with the intention of releasing the feature on Chrome stable towards the end of August.

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