New App Store ad slots heavily promote gambling apps

in General Discussion
App developers have taken to Twitter to voice concerns that Apple's new App Store ad slots regularly feature gambling apps.

Two new ad slots featuring gambling apps
Two new ad slots featuring gambling apps

On Tuesday, developers began reporting that Apple's new ad spaces were frequently showing controversial gambling apps.

The new slots, which Apple began rolling out recently, appear in some searches and product pages under the header "You Might Also Like."

The frequency at which gambling ads are displayed seems to vary, with some reporting that many ads they see are skewed toward gambling. AppleInsider staffers were able to consistently locate such ads.

Simon Stovring, an app developer, reported that he'd found that gambling ads appeared on pages for his apps 30% of the time.

Just visited my the product page for Runestone, one of my apps, 10 times. 3/10 times the product page showed an ad for online gambling.

-- Simon B. Stvring (@simonbs)

Gambling apps are highly controversial. The apps allow players to purchase digital currency and use it to gamble in casino-like games, including Blackjack, poker, roulette, and more. Many of these apps inform users that they can exchange winnings for cash via PayPal, Apple Pay, or prepaid debit cards.

According to complaints, many of these apps allegedly violate anti-gambling laws of at least 25 states.

There's also concern over how easy these apps are to use. At-risk individuals can -- and often do -- spend more money than they are able to afford.

Apple has been involved in a number of lawsuits related to digital gambling apps. Accusers claim that Apple operates as an "unlicensed casino," facilitating illegal gambling.

And, because Apple collects a 30% cut on each in-app purchase, many believe that Apple is profiting directly from illegal activity.

Read on AppleInsider


  • Reply 1 of 5
    Do you have your ad settings personalized or not? Mine are personalized and I saw ads for meditation, calmness, photo editing and sports streaming apps on three different app ‘you might like’. Although the second time I went to the #2 app I saw a video sharing app ad instead of calmness. 
  • Reply 2 of 5
    xbitxbit Posts: 390member
    Gambling ads are even appearing under gambling addiction apps. Appalling.

    I wish Apple would ditch ads on the App Store completely. I don't mind paying a 30% cut to Apple - but don't then do a Google and force me to pay again to make my app the top result when people search for it.
  • Reply 3 of 5
    Yeah, well...gambling has mainstream acceptance in the United States now. It's not just on the App Store. You can see gambling advertising pretty much anywhere. Pro sports have completely embraced stuff like DraftKings etc. 
  • Reply 4 of 5
    The vast majority of ads I see are gambling apps. It certainly tells you where all the money is at. Sports betting is pretty mainstream, but I'm mostly seeing ads for traditional casino games. It shows they can only attract the bottom feeders of advertisers. Next step is clickbait ads common to regurgitated news sites. It makes the App Store feel cheap to me. It is sort of like if Apple were to start putting stickers on their computers and installed third-party crap-ware by default.
    edited October 2022 watto_cobra
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