IPad and Ads. I’m suffering with my iPad only experiment

I’m in the midst of an experiment. I decided I was spending too much time sitting at a desk with my iMac. So I sold it, & bought an iPad Air 4. I’ve had iPads since iPad 3, so I’m not new to them. I currently have 3 of them. :face_with_monocle:

Perhaps it’s now because I’m using it all the time, but good lord, I’m being driven crazy by ads. Pop ups, encroaching static ads, everything! And they are in apps, Safari, and Firefox.

Obviously, I am no stranger to ads, but I’m finding this overwhelming. I’m looking for suggestions to help curb some of this. I’ve not downloaded any ad blockers on the iPad Air. Trying to make sense of which ones, or if they are effective is quite a minefield.

I used Firefox on my iMac, & apparently had it set up just right, as I barely was bothered by ads. Safari was always worse.

Apple has touted using an iPad as a main computing device, but so far, this has put a dent in that theory.

So if anyone has some solutions or advice, I’ll be delighted to hear it. As always, thanks for the input!

Install a Raspberry Pi with PiHole as your DNS server and add the ad sites to the blacklists. I have about 2.5 million blocked tracking and advertising domains on mine, plus all of Facebook, another 2,500 or so domains.

I use Firefox and Brave on my Android phone and with Firefox, I use the uBlock Origin add-in and NoScript. That is the great thing about Firefox on mobile, some of the key add-ons still work, although I don’t know if that works on iPad/iOS, because of Apple.

If you already had multiple iPads, why did you sell the iMac and buy yet another iPad? Why didn’t you experiment by just turning off the iMac for the trial period? Might work out cheaper in the long run. :wink:


I’ve used 1 Blocker on iOS for years and have been happy with it. To be clear, I am not the power blocker that @big_D is. The developer did a big expansion and update about two years ago. Here’s a brief overview from Macstories:

If you don’t want to use a PiHole you can get most of the benefits from nextdns.io. I use at home and on all my mobile devices and it’s quite effective at ad blocking as well as security.

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I think if you want to block ads in apps, you either need to use a pi-hole or something like NextDNS or Adguard. At the recommendation from @Leo I started using NextDNS this week and was very happy with it. Granted, I ran out of my free allotment within a day, but I had found some weirdness within my network (like the myQ plugin for Homebridge calls out every 3 seconds). I indent to subscribe, but it will work best if I install ASUS-Merlin on the router so I can better control my kids school iPads.

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Although this has been mentioned on TWiT shows before and it’s a relatively low-octane solution, it is also free (free-software free, not just no-price) and works reasonably well for me: the Firefox Focus app, which blocks a lot of gunk, can be configured to work in Safari.

At a guess: Sell the old tech (non M1) Mac while it was still worth selling, and then wait a while to purchase a new M1 Mac (or M2 or whatever) when the ecosystem has ridden out the initial wave of unsteadiness.

+1 for nextDNS, I get much more success than I ever did with pihole. I blew the budget of the free tier in no time though, but it’s not expensive.

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Thanks for the replies! I’m going to give the nextDNS a try. It is the closest to my level of “expertise.” I’d like to say I listen to all the TWIT shows because I’m savvy with tech. However, it’s really like why I watch This Old House. I appreciate how people can do the things I don’t have the skill sets to do…

My iMac was a mid 2017, which isn’t really that old, but I could see the redesign of the iMac down the road, & I got more than half of what I paid for the machine in the first place, so it seemed like a good time to sell it. Thus jumping without a net. Plus I really wanted an iPad Air…

I’m a content consumer for the most part. I’m retired, I don’t do any “work” on my devices. I have no real need for a Mac, except for the large screen. I’ll see how this works out, and nothing’s forever, so I could always go back to a Mac, but given my usage, I really don’t see the need.

Again, thanks for all the advice. I learn so much from the shows on the TWIT network AND this message forum!