Apple pauses App Store gambling ads after huge backlash

Apple App Store Awards 2021 Hero
Apple App Store (Image credit: Apple)

Gambling ads on the App Store are out...for now.

Earlier this week, Apple rolled out more ads in the App Store. In addition to ads on the Today tab, advertisers are now able to place ads for their apps on other apps' product pages. While this seemed more of an annoyance than an actual problem at first, the situation quickly became concerning when people started to notice what kinds of ads showed up.

One user found that, when looking at a therapy app, they received an ad for a gambling app. There was another story where an ad on a children's app recommended an adult video chat app.

The backlash was quick and loud. People were not only angry but disappointed in Apple for not only releasing more ads in the first place but especially for doing so in a way that could leave the door open for such inappropriate advertising.

Apple is shutting it down...for now

Fortunately, it appears that the company has heard everyone's complaints and is responding quickly. In a statement to MacRumors, the company says it has temporarily taken down ads related to gambling and "a few other categories" on product pages in the App Store:

"We have paused ads related to gambling and a few other categories on App Store product pages."

That's all that the company has said, and it did not expand on what those "few other categories" might be. It also did not say what it plans to actually do about the situation to ensure that, when it does allow those categories back, how it will ensure the ads show up in the correct place.

Many have already argued that, In a perfect world, Apple would not allow such advertising on its platform in the first place. However, as the company expands its advertising business, that is becoming less and less likely.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.