Blocking Ads on Android

So, purely on accident (mostly on purpose), I managed to block ads on my android devices (of which I have many). This is a good thing, as I find ads embedded in apps to be, and I’m sure I’m not alone, utterly annoying. To the point where I will uninstall an app if the ads become too bothersome. Here’s what I did, again, purely on accident.

Recently, on my NETGEAR Router R7000, I started messing around with the Parental Controls which is uses OpenDNS to setup filtering of your web traffic (such as porn or social media sites). Basically, through their NETGEAR genie application (either from Google Play, presumably the equivalent for Apple devices, or you can get the application for Windows or Mac). From there, you sign up (it’s free) and commence setting up the filtering. When you sign up, you actually create an account with OpenDNS. If you have a NETGEAR router, then you can enable the Parental Controls and it will go through OpenDNS to filter your traffic. It does this simply by changing the Domain Name Server (DNS) Address to that of OpenDNS’.

If you don’t have NETGEAR but were still able to create an account through NETGEAR’s genie, then you go directly to OpenDNS’ site and log in with those credentials. If it’s your initial visit,  it will detect your IP address from your ISP and you can add that as your network and then perform the same filtering you did through the NETGEAR Parental Control Center. The interface on OpenDNS proper is a bit better than NETGEAR’s in my opinion and you can get stats and whatnot. So, to the crux of this post.

The way I accidentally on purpose block ads on all my android devices is by adding the below domains in the ALWAYS BLOCK category.

And viola, ads are blocked on my devices. The domains are what those annoying ads use to interrupt you when you’re using an app.

This of course only works if your android devices are going through WiFi on your network. If you go mobile, it doesn’t work and I’m not aware of a way of change DNS on cellphones and not sure it would be conducive to do so.

The reason, which I know you don’t give two shits about, I use OpenDNS was to block social media which the native blocking in the router can’t do because those sites are using SSL; basically any site (which about all of them now) using SSL can’t be blocked natively, at least with NETGEAR’s router, hence OpenDNS.

And that’s all I have to say about that.


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