Google Play Developers all received an email yesterday morning, outlining some changes that will now be applied to submissions to Google Play, they involve an update to the way ads are displayed, an update to the existing ‘Hate Speech’ policy and a clarification on gambling and rewards from apps/games.
There have been a number of changes to Google Play, but the major ones that they have highlighted are :
- Streamlined the ads policy, with guidance on interstitial ad behavior, and a new “System Interference” provision, which prohibits ads in system notifications or home screen icons, and requires user consent when an app changes specified settings on a device.
- A revised hate speech policy that provides more comprehensive coverage, while recognizing Google Play’s role as a platform for free expression.
- Clarification that the gambling policy extends to all games that offer cash or other prizes; that virtual goods and currency in games are subject to the payment processor policy, that incentives should not be provided to users to rate an app; that artificially inflating an app’s install count is prohibited, and that the Google Play Program Policy applies to all developer information or content made available on the Store.
The major customer facing one there is the ad policy, which effectively kills Airpush style ads which popup in your notification tray, a huge win for Android users.
The full list of updates is available on the Google Play Developer Policies page, but Android Police have done an excellent job listing the entire set of changes, which includes things like developers impersonating Apps, publishing your non-public contacts list and more.
If you’re a developer you really do need to check this out, Google has advised developers that they have 30 days to fix their apps or risk being subject to a warning or at worst REMOVAL from Google Play. If you’re not a developer, then relax, these changes are pretty beneficial to the end user meaning that any rogue developers can be hit a lot harder with removal from Google Play for any dodgy behaviour.