Mobility

Android developers: Here are 4 types of apps Google just banned from the Play Store

Google recently updated its developer policy, here's what Android developers need to know.

Google is known for making changes to its Play Store developer policy. Recently, the company added new guidelines that ban a variety of content from being created or published in the store.

The new guidelines prevent developers from creating or publishing a variety of applications including cryptocurrency miners and any apps that feature "repetitive content."

SEE: Hiring kit: Android developer (Tech Pro Research)

Here is the full list of new omissions and how Google defines them.

1. Child endangerment

According to the policy, Google will ban apps that appeal to minors but contain adult themes. As noted by Android Police, this is likely due to controversies dubbed as "Elsagate," which can be defined as inappropriate content that includes a theme or familiar character that appeals to children.

2. Cryptocurrencies

"We don't allow apps that mine cryptocurrency on devices," the policy stated. "We permit apps that remotely manage the mining of cryptocurrency."

Google has already been making moves to change the state of cryptomining on its products. Earlier this year, as noted by Android Police, the Chrome webstore banned crypto mining extensions, including apps where mining was the sole purpose. Still, several miner apps remain available including MinerGate, Crypto Miner, and NeoNeonMiner, the report stated.

Cryptocurrency has long gotten a bad rap for being the currency of choice for cybercriminals. As cyber threats continue to rise, the change makes sense in context.

SEE: Android Pie is here, coming to Google Pixel phones first (CNET)

3. Dangerous products

The Play Store has also banned any application that "facilitates the sale of explosives, firearms, ammunition, or certain firearms accessories," the policy stated.

Additionally, the policy stated that the Play Store will not allow apps that provide instructions on how to manufacture similar weapons.

4. Repetitive content

Google defined repetitive content as an app that "provide[s] the same experience as other apps already on Google Play."

"Apps should provide value to users through creation of unique content or services," the policy stated.

An additional two changes were made to the policy. According to Android Police, apps whose primary purpose is to serve ads and ones that are intentionally misleading will be banned. Facebook similarly has taken steps to avoid false advertising.

The big takeaways for tech leaders:

  • Google recently changed its developer policy about the type of apps that can be created limiting cyrpto mining, repetitive content, and apps that are entirely ad based.
  • Developers and companies should avoid these types of apps if they have hope to publish on the Google Play Store.

Also see

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Image: CNET

About Laurel Deppen

Laurel Deppen is the 2018 summer Editorial Intern for TechRepublic. She is a student at Western Kentucky University.

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