Google Play to Prominently Display Which Apps Include Ads

The Google Play store will next year prominently display an ‘Ads’ label on those apps that include advertisements. The latest move by Google is to help ensure users know what they are downloading, preventing misunderstandings.

The search giant has started sending emails asking app developers to mark whether their apps include ads in the Play Developer Console. Developers have until January 11 next year to declare if the apps feature ads including those by third party ad networks, display ads, native ads, and/or banner ads. After the due date the ads declaration would be required to update the apps. The email adds that misrepresenting ad presence would violate Google Play Developer Program Policies and might result in a suspension.

Google’s Support website elaborates that the new Ads label “isn’t meant to cover whether an app contains other kinds of commercial content, like paid product placement or offers to make in-app purchases or upgrades. If your app includes paid product placements, make sure they comply with local laws.”

Once verified by Google, the app listing page would then start showing an Ads label, which is said to appear alongside where in-app purchases are marked. The exact text of the Ads label is still not known, and may be similar to what was introduced with Designed for Families – ‘Ad-supported family app’.

When Google earlier this year launched Designed for Families in which developers were required to mark their apps as family friendly, started showing the ‘ad-supported’ label as well for those apps. Google in its email informs developers this ad-supported label is being expanded to all apps on Google Play.