Google Play to now go after OUTDATED Android apps! Check what will happen
Google Play will now prevent users from seeing or discovering older Android apps. Developers will now have to update API to latest version.
Have you often seen apps on the PlayStore that are seldom updated for newer version of Android? Google now seems to be going after them, forcing their developers to update to the newer versions. In one of its latest blog posts, Google has now said that apps will have to be updated to support at least two years old Android version. If that does not happen, Google says it will not be available for discovery or installation for the new users.
“Starting on November 1, 2022, existing apps that don't target an API level within two years of the latest major Android release version will not be available for discovery or installation for new users with devices running Android OS versions higher than apps' target API level. As new Android OS versions launch in the future, the requirement window will adjust accordingly,” said Google in its blog post. What does it mean for you For regular users, it won't matter much, unless your favourite app isn't updated to the latest version of Android APIs. Hence, if you are using an Android app from a few years before and haven't seen many updates, it is high time you reach out to the developer, or look for an alternative. Doing this could mean greater enhancements to privacy and security as well.
For app developers, this will mean adjusting the APIs in accordance with the newer versions of Android. For some, it will be difficult since newer Android versions require more permissions for basic tasks.
“The rationale behind this is simple. Users with the latest devices or those who are fully caught up on Android updates expect to realize the full potential of all the privacy and security protections Android has to offer. Expanding our target level API requirements will protect users from installing older apps that may not have these protections in place,” says Google in the post.
Users should, however, not worry much considering most popular apps are already well above the minimum requirements. “The good news is that the vast majority of apps on Google Play already abide by these standards. For other apps, we know this will require additional attention, which is why we are notifying developers well in advance and providing resources for those who need them,” adds Google.