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Best ad blockers for Android in 2023


A lot of sites and Android apps depend on ads to generate revenue and make a business. However, some ads can be intrusive or malicious, which interrupts your browsing experience.

Fortunately, there’s a myriad of useful tools on how to prevent that – ad blockers (especially with a built-in VPN) for Android are ideal for disabling intrusive or misleading ads, and pop-ups, blocking malicious websites, and even preventing third parties from tracking you and compromising your data.

Ad blocker app is a must if you want to shield yourself from bloated advertising, various pop-ups, videos, and other format graphics that appear when browsing on your Android device.

For this reason, we researched and tested some of the best ad blockers for Android in 2023. We conducted an extreme test on each ad blocker software to ensure it actually works and blocks the most notorious adware. Additionally, we made an overview of each tool’s functionality, features, privacy measures, pricing, and more. Keep reading to find our best pick.

Top 5 best ad blockers for Android in 2023

  1. Total Adblock – the best ad blocker for Android overall
  2. Surfshark CleanWeb – powerful and affordable Android ad blocker with a VPN
  3. Atlas VPN SafeBrowse – Android ad blocker with a VPN for safe browsing
  4. Proton VPN NetShield – secure ad blocker for Android with a VPN included
  5. Avast – free secure browser with a built-in ad blocker for Android

What to look for in the best ad blocker for Android?

Besides the ability to block ads and trackers, there are additional elements that can help you decide which Android ad blocker is best for you. Below we’ve listed some of the key criteria we looked at while picking the best ad blockers:

  • Compatibility with Android and browsers. Make sure to take a look at whether the tool offers an app or a browser extension for Android, its ease of use, and its setup. Some ad blockers are limited to certain operating systems they’re compatible with. Choose the one that’s accustomed to mobile devices, including Android.
  • Blocking filters. With this feature, you can select which ads you want to avoid and which ones to keep. It gives you the option to configure your settings according to your preferences. Usually, the filters are provided in collections called filter lists.
  • Privacy measures. Make sure to double-check the provider's privacy settings, whether or not it has a no-logs policy. Many free ad blocker providers have been known to record users' data. Implementing a no-logs policy will ensure none of your data will be compromised.
  • Additional features. The ad blocker can provide you with much more than just blocking the ads. Look out for Android ad blockers with a built-in VPN, antivirus, and malware scanner. Everything depends on your needs but the additional features will enhance the security of your Android device like no ad blocker will do on its own.
  • Pricing. A reliable and high-quality Android ad blocker doesn’t need to break the bank. There are plenty of providers with good value for money that offers flexible pricing, free trials, or money-back guarantees if you’re not entirely satisfied with the service.

The best Android ad blockers – our detailed list:

There’s a great many various ad blocker tools available. However, it might be tricky to choose the best tool for use. We’ve compiled a list of the top Android ad blocker providers to make it easier. Let’s take a look.

1. Total Adblock – the best ad blocker for Android devices

Total Adblock banner
Free version:Yes (7-day free trial)
Supported platforms:
Android, iOS, Chrome, Edge, Safari, Opera, Firefox, Brave
Customer support:Knowledge base, video tutorials, blog, email, FAQs
Current deal:🔥 Get 75% OFF Total Adblock! 🔥

Our best ad blocker pick for Android is Total Adblock. It’s designed to remove pop-ups and mute all notifications in your browser and apps. This tool also blocks banners, video ads, and third-party trackers, this way protecting private user data.

Even though you can’t download Total Adblock from Google Play Store (as it doesn’t allow system-wide ad blockers), you can get an app file from Total Adblock’s website and install it on your Android device manually.

For fully-fledged protection, you can get the whole Total Security pack – you’ll get a real-time antivirus, safe browsing (VPN), and an ad blocker included.

Some of the key benefits of the ad blocker you’ll get include blocking ads, and trackers, disabling push notifications, in-video ads on YouTube, and more.

Also, Total Adblock offers blocking filters:

  • Base filter (necessary for quality ad blocking)
  • Tracking Protection filter (for trackers)
  • Social Media filter (for widgets like “share and “like” buttons)
  • Annoyances filter (blocks cookie notices and pop-ups)

These rules determine what should be blocked and hidden.

As for privacy, Total Adblock doesn’t store or log any of your data and ensures top-class privacy standards.

In the Adblock tester, Total Adblock scored really well. It blocked all the ads, except the ones in the Google Analytics tool, GIF images, and error trackers but showed good results overall.

In terms of pricing, premium plans start at $2.42/month. You can try the premium service for free with its 7-day free trial and disable unwanted ads, notifications, and intrusive trackers on Android devices.

2. Surfshark CleanWeb – budget-friendly Android ad blocker with a VPN

Surfshark cleanweb banner
Free version:Yes (7-day free trial)
Supported platforms:
Android, iOS, macOS, Windows, Linux, Fire TV, Chrome, Firefox, Edge
Customer support:24/7 live chat, email, guides and articles, FAQs
Current deal:🔥 Get 82% OFF Surfshark + 2 months FREE 🔥

Surfshark is another choice of ours falling into the best ad blockers list for Android devices. This provider offers a VPN service with an ad blocker feature called CleanWeb. It’s quite powerful and can block all types of adware, phishing attempts, and more.

To enable CleanWeb (newly released CleanWeb 2.0) feature on Android devices, you’ll be required to use a VPN. This makes things even better – you’re going to have full protection over your devices, as your traffic is going to be encrypted and your real IP address hidden. The CleanWeb feature will automatically detect malicious sites and block them, protecting you from malware.

In terms of benefits, it definitely doesn’t cut short. You’ll be able to save your mobile data, as the intrusive ads that take up a lot of space and data won’t be loading for you anymore. Also, if you enjoy streaming – it blocks YouTube ads both in the app and the browser. And if you want to unblock certain geo-restricted YouTube (or other streaming platforms) libraries, VPN will easily allow you to do that.

Overall, during our tests, Surfshark’s CleanWeb scored fairly well. It hasn’t passed Google Analytics tools, GIF image, static image, and error monitoring tests.

As for pricing, Surfshark offers really affordable plans. Its services start only from $2.30/month. If you want to try this provider for free, it also has a 7-day free trial or a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you’re already a registered Surfshark user – the CleanWeb feature is yours to use for free.

You can learn more about this service in our Surfshark One review.

3. Atlas VPN SafeBrowse – user-friendly Android ad blocker with a VPN

Atlas VPN SafeBrowse banner 1
Free version:No (only the VPN has a free version)
Supported platforms:
Android, iOS, macOS, Windows
Customer support:24/7 live chat, email, knowledge base, FAQs
Current deal:🔥 Get Atlas VPN, now 81% OFF! 🔥

Atlas VPN is offering ad blocking features suitable for Android and other devices. It’s a decent ad blocker for beating malvertising, third-party trackers, video ads, and more. The built-in SafeBrowse feature is really easy-to-use and is definitely great for beginners.

Firstly, to use the SafeBrowse feature, you have to acquire a VPN service. This will not only let you use all the perks of the VPN and safeguard your online security and privacy – it will automatically block malicious websites and ads on Android devices, be it a tablet or mobile phone.

The trackers that have been detected will be instantly blocked, and you’ll get the lists of them. For extra security, there’s a two-factor authentication – every time you log into your Atlas VPN account, you’ll be asked to confirm your identity.

If you’re keen on streaming – Atlas VPN and its SafeBrowse feature won’t disappoint you either. The VPN service unblocks major streaming services, such as YouTube, and the ad blocker will shut off any video ads both on the app and on the browser.

Try out the SafeBrowse ad-blocking feature with a VPN – use a 30-day money-back guarantee or get the premium plan for as low as $2.05/month.

For more information on features and extras of this provider, read our Atlas VPN review.

4. Proton VPN NetShield – secure Android ad blocker with a VPN included

Proton VPN adblocker
Free version:No (only the VPN has a free version)
Supported platforms:
Android, iOS, macOS, Windows
Customer support:Email, knowledge base, FAQs
Current deal:🔥 Get up to 50% OFF Proton VPN! 🔥

Proton VPN is a VPN service provider with a powerful ad blocker called NetShield that is well-suited for Android devices. Like other leading providers, it does not only block ads but also protects you from malicious websites, intrusive trackers, and malware.

NetShield works with DNS blocking and is able to locate and block the trackers, usually used by companies that are collecting data across the web. So, instead of a DNS database supplied by your ISP (Internet Service Provider) or a search engine, you’re using a DNS resolver managed by Proton VPN.

While you’re using a VPN with the NetShield feature enabled, your traffic on an Android device stays encrypted and protected by AES-256 encryption for hack-proof security.

Aside from that, Proton VPN with NetShield will unblock the geo-restricted streaming platforms, such as YouTube – and NetShield will make sure to block ads on the YouTube app on whichever Android device you’d be using.

If you’re concerned about your speeds while using the VPN and an ad blocker at the same time, a VPN Accelerator can help you retain the original speeds and improve the overall performance.

Proton VPN and ad blocker combination pricing starts at $4.99/month, and you can test out a full-featured version with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

For more information about full package, read our Proton VPN review.

5. Avast – free secure browser with a built-in ad blocker for Android

Avast ad blocker
Free version:Yes
Supported platforms:
Android, iOS, macOS, Windows
Customer support:Live chat, phone, email, knowledge base
Current deal:🔥 Check out all coupons 🔥

Avast is one of the very few secure services that provide a free browser with a built-in ad blocker for Android devices. It’s able to block all kinds of ads (banner ads, video ads), pop-ups, browser notifications, browser fingerprinting, and trackers.

You can download the browser from the Google Play store, it’s very easy to set up and use. Let’s look at some more of its features closer: blocking online ads by default – this can significantly improve website loading times. Also, it blocks online tracking, which stops the third-parties from seeing your online activity.

The secure browser has adjustable ad-blocking modes: Basic (blocks trackers, pop-ups, banner ads, and video ads), Balanced (additionally blocks social media ads), and Strict Blocking (additionally blocks browser notifications and fingerprinting).

What’s more, there’s whitelisting available – you can manage the sites on which you have enabled the ad blocker.

Android devices also can get the Encrypted Media Vault, where downloaded files can be kept encrypted and accessed through the Avast browser.

During our tests, Avast secure browser managed to get an outstanding score. It only hasn’t passed the Google Analytics tool test.

All in all, besides not having an app for Android devices, it worked perfectly on the browser. So, if you’re looking for an ad blocker focused on a clean browsing experience, Avast is going to be the one.

For more information, read our Avast Antivirus review.

6. AdLock – safe Android ad blocker with multiple filtering options

AdLock ad blocker
Free version:Yes (browser extensions only)
Supported platforms:
Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Chrome, Edge, Safari, Firefox, Brave, Opera
Customer support:24/7 email, blog, FAQs, user guide
Current deal:🔥 Check out all coupons 🔥

AdLock is yet another ad blocker for Android with strong detecting and ad-blocking capabilities. It can stop pop-ups, banners, autoplay video ads, trackers, and cryptocurrency mining ads.

Like all providers, AdLock works by blocking DNS – it uses a local VPN to filter out traffic and blocks requests for phishing and malicious sites. Therefore, it cannot work simultaneously with other VPNs.

AdLock has whitelisting and multiple filtering options for system applications: you can adjust the behavior of the apps that you’re using on Android devices by disabling filtering (allowing ads only for the applications you choose), enabling, or blocking. Specifically, on Android devices, HTTPS filtering allows blocking ads on websites that use this protocol.

Another highly useful feature of AdLock that’s worth mentioning – the energy management feature. By blocking ads on your Android device, it reduces background data usage, and in this way – extends battery life.

Moreover, AdLock blocks video ads on the YouTube app with the share button and selecting AdLock from the app list (it works like a custom YouTube player). Also, it blocks ads in the browser too.

During our tests, AdLock scored really well and hasn’t passed only the error monitoring test, which is a nearly-excellent result.

In terms of pricing, you can use it for free on browser extensions on Android devices.

7. Ghostery – reputable ad blocker for Android devices focused on tracker blocking

Ghostery banner
Free version:Yes
Supported platforms:
Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, Edge, Brave
Customer support:FAQs, email, GitHub repository, blog
Current deal:🔥 Check out all coupons 🔥

Using AI anti-tracking technology, Ghostery stands as a reputable ad-blocking option for Android. It’s a completely free service customed to maintain your browsing as private and secure as possible.

This ad blocker works by blocking DNS. It’s known to speed up the sites and the intuitive extension panel displays how long it takes to load the page. It’s quite an expressive set of features for a free service.

Even though Ghostery is mostly focused on blocking trackers, it does block ads, pop-ups, and cookies.

Ghostery has a private browser, which can be downloaded on Android and other platforms. It doesn’t collect any personal user data, has an integrated private search engine, and protects devices from trackers.

If you get annoyed by YouTube ads – great news. Ghostery was able to block auto-play ads on YouTube, so you won’t be bothered by them anymore. Also, during our tests, Ghostery scored well (only failed at error monitoring) – which is not that bad of a result at all.

As mentioned, you don’t have to spend a buck on Ghostery – the browser is free for Android devices.

How we selected and tested these Android ad blockers

In order to select the best Android ad blockers, we’ve done thorough research and testing to see how functional and reliable the tool is. Here are the key criteria we went by:

  • Compatibility with Android. We made sure our selected ad blocker tools were compatible with Android devices and functional on apps and browsers. It’s an important point to take into consideration, as not all ad blockers support mobile devices.
  • Feature suite. We looked into each ad blocker feature suite and tested it on Android devices. The best ad blocker will offer you complete protection against ads, malware, phishing scams, and other cyber threats. Additionally, some of the providers will offer extra protection measures – a VPN, antivirus, secure cloud storage, and more.
  • Security. When choosing an ad blocker, you might want to consider your online security too. Most ad blocker providers for Android don’t replace anti-malware software and won’t fully protect you from viruses. We selected the providers that have extra security to ensure top-class encryption and content filtering.
  • Privacy. Advertisers use trackers to monitor your browsing habits to target personalized ads to you. Ad blocking prevents you from seeing those – and we made sure to select the providers that can ensure that and other privacy measures.
  • AdBlock tester. We tested each provider on AdBlock tester, which measures the strength of the ad blocker and gives you a result on the capability to block the ads.

Why do you need an ad blocker on your Android device?

It can be pretty self-explanatory why you would need to block ads on your Android device. It’s super annoying and pushy, right? However, there are more uses to it than just blocking the ads. Below we listed the top reasons why you need ad filtering for your Android phone or tablet.

  • Remove intrusive ads. Most websites and apps on Android and other devices rely on ads to generate income. Not to mention, some of them can be malicious. Ad blocker is the best way to get rid of them and improve your browsing experience.
  • Remove cookie notifications. A reliable ad blocker can hide cookie notifications without allowing or declining permission to use cookies. It improves surfing and lets you avoid cookie pop-ups on every website.
  • Avoid phishing scams. It’s no news that online scams can be planted almost anywhere, even in an ad. The powerful ad blocker will identify, block, and mitigate targeted threats and ransomware on your Android device.
  • Secure your Android device. With a fully-fledged ad blocker suite, you can get additional protection, such as a VPN or antivirus, and, therefore, secure your Android even more.
  • Reduce data usage and save battery life. Ads take up some amount of space and data. Hence, using an ad blocker will not only save your mobile data, and improve browsing speeds but will also save your Android’s battery life.

Best Android ad blockers based on your needs

Just like any tool, different ad blockers for Android devices have their own strengths and drawbacks. Before selecting an ad blocker, you should identify your needs and what you will use it for. Let’s take an in-depth look at how ad blockers can adjust to your preferences:

  • YouTube ad blockers for Android. If you don’t want to see bloated ads on YouTube videos, you either need a premium subscription or an ad blocker. With it, you’ll be able to cut the ads from YouTube, whether you’d be streaming it on the app or browser.
  • Ad blockers for Android TV. If you’re streaming your favorite shows on Android TV and don’t want to see ads – just stream ad-free by using an ad blocker on the big screen. Various ad blocker tools are customed to home devices as well. Some of them have a built-in ad blocker, and some need to be set up manually via DNS.
  • Ad blockers for Android tablets. Similarly, as on your phone, Android tablets also need an ad blocker to ensure your browsing or streaming is smooth. You can use it either as an app or a browser extension.

Are free ad blockers for Android safe?

Yes and no. Some of the free ad blocker tools might be safe. However, we don’t recommend them. Free services are limited in supported platforms, features, security, and what it offers to your device overall.

Built-in browser ad blockers for Android might not block the ads and pop-ups or might be designed to block only a certain type of ads. Simply put, it’s limited in its capabilities and can minimally solve the annoying ads.

If you want to have a safe, ad-free browsing experience, investing in a premium option is the way to go. We recommend either getting a top-class ad blocker or trying it with a free trial and a money-back guarantee:

  • Total AdBlock. Block all sorts of adware and prevent pop-ups on your Android device. Try service for free – use a 30-day money-back guarantee or a 7-day free trial.
  • Surfshark CleanWeb. This VPN provider with a built-in ad blocker blocks all types of adware and phishing attempts. You can try it for free with a 7-day free trial or a 30-day money-back guarantee as well.

How to block ads on Android by changing the DNS

If you want to block ads on your Android device without acquiring any apps, you can easily do that by changing to an ad-blocking service’s private DNS provider. This method requires no ad blocker apps. However, it only works on Android 9 Pie and above.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to changing DNS on Android:

  1. Head to Settings > Network and Internet > Advanced > Private DNS.
  2. Choose the option Private DNS Provider Hostname.
  3. Enter "dns.adguard.com" and Save.
  4. That's it! You'll no longer see any in-app ad ads or pop-ups on browsers.
Cybernews pro tip

Keep in mind that on some Android devices, the DNS settings might be different. If that’s the case, look for Private DNS settings and the option to manually put the needed information. With AdGuard DNS, you get rootless ad blocking on your Android device, but there’s a chance it might not block all the ads.

Get Total AdBlock

Browsers with built-in ad blockers for Android devices

If you’d prefer using a browser with an already built-in ad blocker rather than getting a separate ad blocker app for your Android device or manually configuring it via DNS, there are a few powerful options you can choose.

Google Chrome comes with an in-built browser for the majority of Android devices. It has been updated to block the ads by default. However, it still passes through many of them alongside other intrusive and potentially spiteful malvertising.

Here are some other high-quality browsers with built-in blockers:

  • Opera browser – can work with another ad blocker add-on or app.
  • Pure Browser – easy-to-use and configure, smooth ad-free browsing experience with improved performance and speeds.
  • Dolphin Browser – fast loading times and powerful ad-blocking engine.
  • Vivaldi – integrated ad blocker will not only block intrusive ads but also protect your Android devices from trackers.

Conclusion

There are many choices when it comes to getting an ad blocker for your Android device. The selection starts from free ad blocker apps to built-in ad blocker browsers and fully-fledged ad-proof online protection suites.

You can pin down your choice by deciding what your needs are and how determined you’re about to prevent the notorious adware, ransomware, and malvertising on your Android device.

We always recommend getting the full range of services, including privacy and security features that ensure no ads will get through and your online browsing will be encrypted and secure. Suites like Total Adblock will help you achieve that and safeguard your Android device.

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