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Is it possible to limit searches within the Google Play Store to apps (gratis or paid) that do not contain ads?

If it's not possible within the Google Play store, is there another effective way to accomplish this?

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4 Answers 4

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There's the Playsearch website which allows you that without having to install anything beforehand:


Playsearch website, your criteria marked (click image for larger variant)

In addition to what you asked for, you even can specify how long ago the last update should be at maximum, what size the app should have, what Android version it should support, how well it ranks (stars) – and how wide-spread (number of installs) it should at least be.

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  • The kaki87 site used to work great but now appears to be broken? All my searches show apps that have both ads and/or in-app purchases.
    – spcsLrg
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 10:49
  • No idea. I take all my apps from F-Droid, so I don't have that search issue. In the F-Droid client you can simply configure not to show apps with specific anti-features, so no need for 3rd party search tools ;)
    – Izzy
    Commented Aug 22, 2022 at 18:41
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Not sure with native Google Playstore, but you could use Yalp or a fork of Yalp, Aurora (F-droid link), it has many search filters e.g for ads, gratis, number of downloads etc..

Aurora Store is an alternate ( FOSS client) to Google's Play Store, with an elegant design, using Aurora you can download apps, update existing apps, search for apps, get details about in-app trackers and much more.

Select the filter and tap apply, your search results will match your criteria.


Filters in Aurora (click image for larger variant)

Disclaimer I am not affiliated with Aurora, but I use it as a replacement to Google play store client

Acknowledgements

  1. Xda thread
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With App Finder, you can filter for apps without ads (and many other criteria). Also, in the result list it is indicated for each app if it contains ads.

It has 2,380,000 apps indexed currently, much more than playsearch.kaki87.net and reallyfreeapps.com. Also, there are more filters available, and more information is shown in the result list.

Available from Google Play here.

For more information see the thread on XDA, and here.

Disclosure: I am from Skyica LLC, the developer of App Finder

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  • Thanks Jake. AppQuery looks very promising! Is it offered in the spirit of generosity and giving, or does it have a profit-based revenue model? Also, do you intend to release it on F-Droid too? Commented Sep 29, 2022 at 6:21
  • I has a profit-based revenue model, however there is a free tier, and I'll try to make it affordable to everyone. Also note that for the database alone a 32-GB-RAM cloud server must be paid, and crawling is expensive also.
    – jake n
    Commented Sep 29, 2022 at 11:39
  • Thanks for the update Jake. I've been thinking about starting a project (completely unrelated to your project) that involves a fair amount of crawling. I wasn't expecting the actual crawling to be very expensive, but based on your comment, perhaps I need to revisit the potential cost. What is making the crawling expensive for your project? Commented Sep 29, 2022 at 21:14
  • crawling 1.5 mio pages (*2 + something for "similar apps"+"more from developer") each day or every few days takes some resources you have to pay in the cloud, or you must buy and run your own servers.
    – jake n
    Commented Sep 29, 2022 at 23:53
  • AppQuery is now available worldwide, has data for all countries, and the number of apps has increased from 1.5 to 2.2 million
    – jake n
    Commented Dec 24, 2022 at 20:01
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I developed an app (and web) called reallyfreeapps for Android to look at apps and games with no ads and no IAP. You can take a look at https://reallyfreeapps.com

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  • I ran into apps which appear in the search results but have been removed from the play store. e.g. Piano Lessons 2021 on reallyfreeapps.com/?search=piano
    – jayvdb
    Commented Dec 12, 2021 at 0:56

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