Young People Flock to Block Mobile Ads but Operators Should Stay Away

by Wei Shi, Nitesh Patel | Feb 08, 2017

Operators should consider digital management platforms like Sprint and Verizon

Boston, MA - February 8, 2017 - While network-based ad-blocking may be perceived as a customer friendly option, Strategy Analytics expects the move to generate negative sentiment and controversy from advertisers, publishers, and regulators, which would outweigh any potential benefit, according to the new report “Should Mobile Operators Avoid Ad-Blocking?” Instead operators should follow the lead of Sprint, Telefonica, and Verizon and add value to the mobile advertising ecosystem.

Clients can access the report here:

Recently mobile operators like Digicel and Three have either commercially launched or trialed service to block mobile advertising at network level, bringing this topic to new contention.

As is shown in another recent Strategy Analytics report, “Facts and Figures -- Ad Blocking in 2016,” ad blocking has become an increasingly common practice on all digital platforms as a result of ad bloat and privacy concerns.

“Even without the participation of mobile operators, the use of mobile ad-blockers has already become popular. According to a recent study by Strategy Analytics, more than one-third of mobile users under the age of 24 years in France have installed ad-blockers on their mobile handsets. This is worrying to brands and publishers,” Wei Shi, Analyst, Wireless Media Strategies notes.


Strategy Analytics believes mobile operators should leave it to the market to provide the solutions consumers need.  “Mobile operators may argue network level ad-blocking services both protect customers from annoying ads, and enables operators to participate in the mobile advertising value-chain. By enabling network level ad-blocking, however, mobile operators are not only alienating the publishing and advertising industries, but also challenging regulators, especially in markets with strict net-neutrality rules,” adds Nitesh Patel, Director, Wireless Media Strategies. “Instead, operators should investigate alternative opportunities to add value to the mobile advertising ecosystem. For example, they can consider becoming data management platforms (DMPs), like Sprint’s Pinsight Media, or Verizon’s Precision Insights, or playing a role in ad-assurance to help advertisers overcome ad-fraud.”

About Strategy Analytics

Strategy Analytics, Inc. provides the competitive edge with advisory services, consulting and actionable market intelligence for emerging technology, mobile and wireless, digital consumer and automotive electronics companies. With offices in North America, Europe and Asia, Strategy Analytics delivers insights for enterprise success. 

European Contact: Wei Shi, +44 1908 423627,
US Contact: David Kerr, +1 617 614 0720,
Leave a comment

Let's talk

Now you know a little about us, get in touch and tell us what your business problem is.
Inquiry / Message:

please enter captcha from left