Starting in 2016 it’ll be easy to know if Android apps include ads before you download them. Google is requiring all developers that distribute apps through the Google Play Store to declare by January 11th whether or not those apps include ads.
Early next year, users will see an “ad-supported” notice on apps in the Play Store so there won’t be any surprises after they download an app.
Google says most types of display ads count, including ads from third-party ad networks, native ads, and banner ads. Apps with paid product placement don’t necessarily need to be declared as having ads… but Google does suggest developers ensure that any apps with product placement “comply with local laws.”
The company actually launched a limited version of this feature earlier this year as part of its family-friendly content initiative. But now Google isn’t just asking developers of kid-friendly apps and games to participate: in early 2016 you should be able to know at a glance if any app in the Google Play Store is ad supported.