Wednesday, 25 January 2012

KDDI places ads in the Android Notification Bar - And How to Stop Them

Japan’s #2 Carrier KDDI Pushing Ads On Android Notification Bar « Asiajin
One of the cool things about Android is that there are a ton of free apps in the market. A common way for developers to make this work is to display ads somewhere in the app, and offer a "premium", ad free pay version. This works pretty well for all concerned, and we don't hear too many complaints about the ads.

On the other hand, what we don't like are ads when we didn't ask for them and have no way of getting rid of them. This is what makes KDDI's latest stunt all the more despicable. Apparently, with the latest update of the "au one Market", a new licensing agreement pops up, and once you agree to its terms, KDDI can push ads to your notification area, as illustrated in this pic from Twitter, where you can see an ad for a diet solution being pushed to the user's handset.

I've blogged a couple of times about how I think KDDI is approaching the smartphone market in the wrong way. This latest move is further evidence of a strategy that is not in the interests of the consumer.

Ways to avoid/get rid of this problem: If you can, and haven't done so already, uninstall the au one Market app. You don't use it anyway, right? If you can't uninstall it, but it asks you to update, then make sure you don't click "ok" on the license agreement. There should be an option not to see the ads if you scroll down the agreement, so click this instead (the link is marked "広告情報の表示を希望されないお客様はこちら").

If you have already agreed to the license terms by mistake, rlm advises the following procedure:
  1. Go to the "Top" tab (presumably in the au one Market app), and scroll all the way to the bottom
  2. Tap "About Ads" ("広告について")
  3. Tap "Stop/Restart Ads" ("配信停止・再開はこちら")
  4. Check what is displayed on screen: If the button displayed shows "広告表示" ("display ads"), then go back without doing anything. Ads are off. If the button displayed shows "広告停止" ("stop ads"), push the button to turn off the ads.

1 comment:

  1. Would not be wise for Docomo to do this.