Surfing the Internet without advertisements such as banners and YouTube video-ads is a normal thing for Firefox users, thanks to Adblock Plus, the most popular browser addon in the world with more than 120 million downloads. For a long time, users of other browsers such as Firefox always had to live with inferior and more complicated solution. But now there are even two adblocker extensions in the Chrome Webster called “AdBlock” and “Adblock Plus”. But which one of them is the better one?
Although both extensions have (almost) the same name, they were created by different developers. AdBlock is significantly older and was created for Chrome and Safari browsers, inspired by the Firefox project. Adblock Plus is the equivalent to the Firefox version and was ported to Google Chrome a few months ago. So while AdBlock was optimized from the ground for Chrome, Adblock Plus is based on the code of the most successful adblocker. But what does this mean for Chrome users?
Both adblocking extensions are using Firefox Adblock Plus filter lists that determine the elements that are blocked from loading. Their effectiveness when it comes to handling these filter lists is more or less the same, although not as effective as the Firefox version. This is caused by a bug in the WebKit engine the Google Chrome browser is based on which doesn’t provide the same blocking capabilities as the Firefox browser does. This becomes especially visible on YouTube.com, where the blocking can only be achieved through a hack.
So in conclusion, both are very effective adblocking extensions that are almost on the same level as the very advanced Firefox adblocker. However, AdBlock is using a different blocking mechanism which is sometimes slowing down the browser. Adblock Plus (although still in beta) has the better code basis and thus a more advanced performance, especially on YouTube.com.
About the author: Simon Miller, author of this guest post, is also one of the editors of chrome-plugins.org, a website regularly providing reviews of Chrome extensions, apps and themes.