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Cue the ughs: Ads are showing up for some people in Google Feed

The ads are showing up for a handful of users, but we don't yet know if they will see a wider rollout.

Published onMay 25, 2018

Google Feed
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  • Some people noted that ads have shown up in the Google Feed.
  • The ads appear to be in testing and have not widely rolled out to Android users.
  • Google is known to test features within its apps from time to time.

Ever since its days as Google Now, Google Feed was gloriously clear of any advertisements. That might soon change, as some users noticed ads where there were none before.

A handful of people took to Twitter and Google Plus to complain about the presence of ads in Google Feed. Apart from the little green “Ad” badge on the bottom left corner and the URL being written out, there is nothing to differentiate the ads from the other cards.

Folks are understandably perturbed by the inclusion of ads in Google Feed. The Google app holds a prominent place on Android devices, with certain devices letting you swipe from the home screen to get to it faster. Placing ads in Google Feed will certainly get the requisite eyeballs, but those angry eyeballs are not used to seeing ads there in the first place.

We understand that Google is deeply trenched in the ad business. According to Statista, parent company Alphabet’s ad revenue comprised almost $95.4 billion out of the $110 billion it made in total revenue in 2017. From a business perspective, it makes sense to stick ads in something like Google Feed.

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Even so, it is hard to find someone excited about seeing ads on their smartphones, particularly in an app as prominent as the Google app.

The good news is that this does not seem to be an official or wide rollout. Google tests features within its apps from time to time, so this may not arrive to all users in the future.

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