How Android phones in India will change A LOT; What the CCI rules change for you

CCI-Google outcome: Android phone users in India will witness a lot of changes going ahead.

| Updated on: Jan 26 2023, 20:10 IST
Google Pixel 7 Pro
Android phones in India under the new CCI directive will change drastically. (Amritanshu / HT Tech)
Google Pixel 7 Pro
Android phones in India under the new CCI directive will change drastically. (Amritanshu / HT Tech)

The CCI has imposed a set of new regulations on Google in India for the Android OS platform and as of now, there are some big changes coming our way. The CCI's directives aim to make it a fair competition for all app store owners and other app developers in India, ending Google's monopoly on certain aspects of your Android phone. Even though Google expressed objections on the directives, it has to follow them if it wants to have a presence in India.

While the directive is slightly complex, here is a simple breakdown of how the directive will affect Android-based smartphones in India. Note that the changes will also require Google's partners for a wide-scale implementation, which includes partners, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and developers.

How Android phones will change in India

- Smartphone brands can now license Google apps for pre-installation on their devices. This means company's can choose to avoid pre-installing Google apps, or just select a few of the Google apps as the pre-installed apps collection.

- You will now be able to choose your default search engine on your Android app. Hence, if you don't want to use Google Search, you can now rely solely on Bing, Yahoo and other popular Search engines. Users will be able to choose this while setting up a new Android phone.

- When buying an app from the Google Play Store, or purchasing a subscription, you can now choose which billing partner to rely on. App developers can now use different billing systems to allow you to make payments. This should mean lower prices for apps and subscriptions, given that Google takes a 30 percent cut of all payments made via Google Play billing.

- Your Android phone will now make it easy to update apps that are installed from Google Play.

“We recently made changes to the Android installation flow and auto-updating capability for sideloaded apps and app stores while ensuring users understand the potential security risks,” says Google.

What remains to be now seen is how fast Google and its partners implement the directives. Do you like what the new CCI directives have to say? Or, do you prefer the Google way of running your Android phone?

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First Published Date: 26 Jan, 17:12 IST
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