Posted by Sameer Samat, Vice President of Product Administration, Android and Google Play
Thanks for all of your feedback on Android API updates and browse insurance policies. We heard your requests for enchancment in addition to some frustrations. We wish to clarify how and why we make these modifications and the way we use your suggestions to enhance how we deploy these updates and talk with the developer group.
From the start, we’ve tried to design Android as a completely open supply working system. We’ve got additionally labored arduous to make sure compatibility with earlier releases and API consistency, out of respect and to make the platform so simple as potential. This developer-centric strategy and openness has been the inspiration of the Android philosophy from the start. These don’t change.
However because the platform grows and evolves, each choice we make is accompanied by compromise. Every single day, billions of individuals world wide use the apps you've constructed to do unbelievable issues, like connecting with family members, managing funds, or speaking with docs. Customers need extra management and transparency over how their private info is utilized by apps, and count on that Android, as a platform, will do extra to offer that management and this transparency. This accountability in direction of the customers is one thing that we’ve all the time taken severely. That's why we're taking a look at how our platform and insurance policies replicate this dedication.
Take a more in-depth take a look at authorizations
Earlier this yr, we launched Android Q Beta with dozens of options and enhancements that present customers with extra transparency and management, whereas additional securing their private knowledge. Along with the system-level modifications in Q, we’re reviewing and refining our Play developer insurance policies to additional enhance consumer privateness. For years, we’ve requested builders to reveal the gathering and use of private knowledge to permit customers to know how their info is getting used and to make use of solely the permissions which might be really wanted to offer the options and capabilities. the companies of the applying. As a part of the Strobe mission, introduced final October, we’re deploying particular directions for every of the Android authorizations, and making use of the purposes developed by Google to the identical commonplace.
We began by altering the SMS permissions and the decision log on the finish of final yr. To higher shield the delicate consumer knowledge obtainable via these permissions, we’ve restricted entry to sure use circumstances, for instance when an software has been chosen by the consumer as an electronic mail software. default textual content. We understood that some options of the applying utilizing this knowledge would now not be allowed, together with those who many customers discovered helpful, and we labored with you on alternate options, to the extent potential. Consequently, the variety of purposes with entry to this delicate info has decreased by greater than 98%. The overwhelming majority of them have been capable of swap to another or eradicate minor options.
Studying from developer feedback
Whereas these modifications are important to boost the privateness of our customers, we acknowledge that platform evolution may end up in important work for builders. It's our accountability to ensure you have the small print and sources it’s essential to perceive and implement the modifications, and we all know there’s room for enchancment. For instance, once we began implementing these new SMS and Name Log methods, lots of you have been annoyed with the decision-making course of. We needed to share various frequent themes:
Declaration of Permission Kind. A few of you felt that the use case descriptions on our Declaration of Authorization kind have been unclear and tough to finish correctly.
Velocity of the method of examination and attraction. For a few of you, it took too lengthy to search out out if the purposes met the necessities of the technique. Others felt that the attraction technique of a call was too lengthy and tedious.
Getting info from a "actual human" at Google A few of you left with the impression that our selections have been automated with out human involvement. And others felt that it was tough to succeed in an individual capable of present particulars on our strategic selections and on new use circumstances proposed by the builders.
In response, we’re enhancing and clarifying the method, together with:
Extra Detailed Communication We’re presently reviewing e-mails that we ship relating to rule rejections and appeals to higher clarify them, together with why a call has been made, find out how to modify your software to conform and find out how to attraction.
Scores and calls. We are going to embrace directions for the decision in all software emails. The attraction kind with particulars can be obtainable in our assist middle. We may also evaluate and enhance our attraction course of.
Enlargement of the workforce . People, not robots, are already reviewing each delicate choice, however we’re enhancing our communication in order that responses are extra customized – and we’re increasing our workforce to assist pace up the attraction course of.
Analysis of Developer Accounts
We additionally heard the considerations of some builders whose accounts have been prevented from distributing apps through Google Play. Whereas the overwhelming majority of builders on Android are well-intentioned, some accounts are suspended for critical and repeated violations of guidelines defending our shared customers. Unhealthy-faith builders usually attempt to work round this drawback by opening new accounts or utilizing present accounts from different builders to publish harmful apps. We attempt as a lot as potential to be clear, however in an effort to forestall unhealthy religion builders from taking part in with our methods and placing our customers in danger, we can’t all the time share the the reason why we concluded that 39, one account is linked to a different.
Though 99% + of those suspension selections are appropriate, we’re additionally very delicate to the impression this may increasingly have in case your account has been disabled in error. You possibly can instantly attraction any execution and each name is fastidiously examined by somebody on our workforce. Through the course of the attraction, we are going to restore your account if we uncover that an error has been made.
Individually, we are going to quickly be taking extra time (just a few days, not just a few weeks) to evaluate purposes from builders who haven’t confirmed themselves right here. It will enable us to carry out extra thorough checks earlier than approving on-line purposes within the retailer and can assist us make even fewer inaccurate selections relating to developer accounts.
Thanks on your continued partnership and for persevering with to make Android an extremely helpful platform for billions of individuals world wide.
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