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cheetah mobile


Shocker: Cheetah Mobile's CM Launcher keeps data in unsecured cloud storage

Mobile app empire Cheetah Mobile not only makes terrible software, but has even found its products ejected from the Play Store on occasion for breaking rules. If you somehow need more reasons not to use apps from the company, one developer has discovered that some applications, including CM Launcher, store data in an unsecured cloud storage bucket.

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[Update: Cheetah responds] Cheetah Mobile strikes again: QuickPic returns to Play Store, loaded with bugs and advertisements

There's always a sense of concern when a popular app is sold off to a new owner. Sometimes everything goes well, but it's not uncommon for new ownership to lead to more aggressive advertising or other problems. QuickPic was a popular photo gallery app years ago, and it has returned to the Play Store — in worse shape than ever.

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Change spotted: Cheetah Mobile starts listing some of its apps under "Leopard Mobile" (nice try, guys)

The Cheetah Mobile story is the gift that keeps on giving. There can't be a few months of break between incidents, scandals, or even weird news involving the company, and today is no different. We just spotted that two of Cheetah's applications are now masquerading under a new developer name: Leopard Mobile. Yup, sounds legit.

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PSA: QuickPic disappeared from the Play Store following Cheetah debacle, and you should uninstall it if you're still using it

For many years, QuickPic was the darling photo gallery app of many. It was small, fast, efficient, and free — a rare combination of features. Then in 2015, QuickPic was bought by Cheetah Mobile and, despite many assurances that the app wouldn't be monetized with ads, those of us who had followed Cheetah over the years could guess that something was up. Now, following a huge Cheetah debacle last month, QuickPic has disappeared from the Play Store. If this isn't indication enough that things are iffy, I don't know what is.

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[Update: Google status update] Google has removed two apps implicated in Cheetah Mobile and Kika click fraud scheme

If you were, for some reason, hoping to download CM File Manager or Kika Keyboard, I have some bad news. A report last week claimed that Cheetah Mobile and an associated company called Kika Tech were engaged in some shady advertising practices, and now Google has responded. These two apps have been suspended from the Play Store, and Google may still take further action.

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[Update: CM responds, lawyers circle] Evidence points to Cheetah Mobile and Kika Tech engaging in massive click fraud scheme

I know this is going to be shocking, but Cheetah Mobile may be involved in some very shady dealings. According to app analytics firm Kochava, Cheetah Mobile and an associated company called Kika Tech are using extensive permissions in their Android apps to fraudulently claim commissions for app installs from advertisers. The eight apps detected by Kochava have more than 2 billion downloads in the Play Store and around 700 million active users.

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Cheetah Mobile's Security Master app hits 500 million installs on the Play Store

Everyone's favorite developer, Cheetah Mobile, has published many apps with tens of millions of downloads. Some have even hit 100 million. 500 million, however, is a challenge for any company, but Cheetah Mobile has cheated the odds and hit 500 million downloads on Security Master, its second app to do so.

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Badland 2 leaves geo-restricted beta, replaces coins and boosters with a single $3.99 IAP [Updated]

The original Badland was a beautiful adventure game with interesting physics, gorgeous graphics, immersive soundtrack, and enough charm to land it on my personal list of 15 hauntingly beautiful dark and atmospheric games. The game was done so well that we forgave its late arrival on Android compared to iOS, applauded it for implementing cloud save and immersive mode for gameplay, and even lauded its implementation of free to play.

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Cheetah Mobile expands its app empire by buying News Republic for $57 million

Look, it's not as if we at Android Police are fanatically opposed to Cheetah Mobile as a company. I can see how one could get that impression from reading the previous Cheetah stories, I really can. But between screwing up an otherwise anticipated game sequel with in-app purchases, screwing up a perfectly good ASUS phone with bloatware, or screwing up future generations of developers with bloatware classes, it's hard not to see them as the cackling cartoon villains of the Android software world. The company's latest acquisition is a French news aggregator call News Republic.

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Cheetah Mobile licenses hugely popular 'Badland 2' for Android, promptly ruins it with IAPs

We're about as shocked as you are on this - apparently the developer of the hugely popular game Badland has released the also-hugely-popular sequel, Badland 2, for Android. The problem? Indie dev Frogmind isn't the publisher: Clean Master Games, aka Cheetah Mobile, is. This is troubling for several reasons. And before you ask: yes, this is almost certainly legit. The game has a Frogmind / Clean Master intro splash, Clean Master Games is responding to user complaints in the reviews on the Play Store, and Cheetah Mobile's team is even chasing down cracked versions of the game already. (Let alone that even Cheetah Mobile would be extremely unlikely to stoop so low as blatant trademark and copyright theft of a famous game.)

The game is already out on iOS - it costs $3.99, has no in-app purchases, and is published by the developer, Frogmind Games.

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