Android WebView Media Integrity API cracks down on ad-free YouTube

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In a bid to stop ad-blocking on modified ad-free YouTube apps, Google is introducing the Android WebView Media Integrity API. This is simply an API that helps websites check the authenticity of devices before opening YouTube videos on them. If the API detects that the device is using a modified YouTube app, it’ll block access to certain controls.

Google isn’t designing this new feature just to combat ad blockers on YouTube. This is a security feature that will help protect user’s personal information from compromise by dangerous devices on the web. It can also help Google to crack down on ad blockers that are causing harm to YouTube’s business.

There are some concerns as to how this feature will work and how effective it will be. To keep these concerns in check, Google is strengthening the functionality of Android’s WebView Media Integrity API. But how exactly will this API help keep a check on the usage of ad-free YouTube apps?

To curb ad-free YouTube apps, Google might turn to the Android WebView Media Integrity API

A few weeks ago, YouTube kicked off its all-out fight against the use of ad blockers on its platform. This move by the tech giant saw the blocking of most ad-blockers from usage on the platform. Those making use of ad-blockers while streaming were given warnings to abstain from using these software products.

Despite this move by Google, some users are still bent on enjoying an ad-free viewing experience without subscribing to YouTube Premium. To achieve this goal, such users move over to ad-free YouTube alternative apps. These apps offer users videos from YouTube while blocking ads and users are beginning to flock to these apps.

YouTube’s fight against ad-blockers will also stretch to these apps as well. To prevent YouTube video streaming on these apps, Google might use the Android WebView Media Integrity API. Unlike the WebView for Android devices, this API checks device integrity before letting it access websites.

This API tool will test the integrity of these ad-free YouTube apps and find them wanting in most areas. After the test, the API will prevent users from accessing YouTube because they use ad-blockers. YouTube doesn’t permit the usage of ad-blockers on its platform, so the API will be quick to flag these apps down.

Google will soon start using this API to flag down apps that offer ad-blocking services for YouTube streaming. Users of these apps will be left without any other option than to head over to the YouTube app and stream with ads. They can also opt to pay the monthly Premium subscription fee and get rid of the ads.