One of the most annoying, if not the most, aspects of a website is the numerous ads that spring up either as pop-up windows or in any other form that interferes with your browsing on the web. To tackle this problem, many browsers now have extensions developed with the purpose of blocking ads, thereby reducing disturbances for web surfers.
One of the best features of Google Chrome is the Web Store, which houses a lot of interesting goodies and add-ons to the browser. Two of the most popular extensions in the Chrome Webstore are AdBlock and Chrome Adblock Plus, an open source community project, created Adblock originally for Firefox users before making Chrome-compatible versions.
Although still in beta, Adblock Plus is now one of the most popular add-ons chosen by web surfers to effectively block ads such as popups and banners. But which one of the two, AdBlock or Adblock Plus, is the better one? A comparison of the two different versions is presented here.
Similarities between Adblock and Adblock Plus
Both the versions perform the same function, i.e. to block unwanted ads from appearing on websites. Both versions give you a set of options as to the kinds of ads you want to block, like pop-up ads, display ads, banner ads, etc. and use the same filter lists to block them effectively. Another similar feature between the two is that both enable the user to create their own blocking rules. But being the original (which more than 130 million users have downloaded for Firefox), there are certain differences that Adblock Plus has over AdBlock.
Adblock Plus, being in beta stage, has a rather minimalist interface, making it easier to load than the previous version. The other version of Adblock showed an intrusive window which asked for donations to the developer, which is absent in Adblock Plus. The latter also scores higher in speed, as AdBlock can slow down performance when multiple pages are opened. Despite the functionality of both versions to create own blocking rules, the previous version makes it easier to choose unwanted elements on websites than Adblock Plus.
The highlight of Adblock Plus is, however, the option to block video ads in You Tube. Video ads are those 10-30 second ads that appear on the video screen before the actual video commences. But the extension can only block video ads in You Tube and is still trying to figure out a way to block video ads from other video streaming sites too. The reason is apparently due to a limitation in the WebKit engine, on which Chrome is based.
Since its release, Adblock has received excellent reviews from reviewers and has given consistent performance. The response to Adblock Plus was no less enthusiastic, if not better. The extension even made it to the top of the rankings for the top 10 plug-ins for Google Chrome. Also the fact that it has improved over several aspects of its predecessor also makes a stronger point for the improved version.
This guest article was submitted by Simon, one of the contributors of the chrome-plugins.org website, a non-profit website which features reviews of the best extensions, themes and apps for the Google Chrome browser.