Dec 13th, 2012

There’s little more annoying than trying to dismiss a banner ad within an app only to miss your mark – they make those X’s so tiny, after all. It’s not that clicking the ad and giving the developer is so horrible that we try to avoid it at all angles, but when you’re in the middle of a game or trying to read through your social networking timelines it is quite the nuisance to be kicked over to the browser.

Well, Google’s found a way to fix that little issue with the latest update to AdWords. If you happen to click an edge of an ad, the ad will now display a quick prompt (within the ad itself so it’s non-invasive) asking if you want to be taken to the ad’s destination. It’s a very small and simple change, but one that makes a lot of sense and will save users a lot of headache and trouble.

Mobile ads are unique in that the lack of precision compared to a mouse and the disruptive action of being kicked out of an app is something that can ruin the user experience for many. Even full screen ads can remain an issue. Take the Scarface game, for instance — the game uses full-screen ads after certain actions that require multiple button presses. Since these occurrences can be random it is easy to click one inadvertently. It’s so easy, in fact, that I’ve made the mistake multiple times within one session.

It was so bad that the game was completely undesirable to play no matter how fun it was. I completely uninstalled it, and that was that. It’s great that Google is finally doing something about it, and while developers might not like the missed revenue from those random, accidental clicks that occur they should take solace in the fact that users will be a lot happier to use ad-enabled apps. Do you have a story about an app that had ads annoying enough to make you want to uninstall it?

[via Google]