Google is alerting app developers to some big coding changes ahead of the planned expansion of Android's permission auto-reset policy. This means more users will have permissions they've granted to apps automatically revoked starting in December. Here's what you need to know as a consumer.
Last week's ruling in Epic Games v. Apple which basically allowed app developers to direct customers away from the App Store payment platform for in-app transactions was praised and panned across the spectrum. But in the view of Epic, it did not go far enough in stopping what it alleges to be Apple's harmful practices on its iOS app distribution monopoly. So it went on Sunday as the gaming giant filed an appeal.
Apple probably knew what was coming down the pike when it decided last week to allow app developers to communicate to customers ways to conduct in-app transactions that circumvent the App Store and its 30% commission fee. But it looks like the skids are coming on anyway as the most prominent lawsuit over the iPhone maker's alleged monopoly on iOS app sales takes a final, major turn.
After plenty of feedback from app developers and their users alike, the Google Play Store will soon begin letting everyone filter reviews and ratings based on where users are. Publishers will also be able to better track ratings by device type.
As a blogger focused on Android, I see a lot of spammy app names in the Play Store. Apps with extraneous descriptors trying to pop up in more searches, apps that include the name of other, more popular apps, or even (shudder) emoji in the names. Someone at Google is as tired of all that as I am, because there's a new set of guidelines for developers publishing apps in the Play Store.
Since its introduction during I/O 2019, Jetpack Compose was obviously destined to become the prescribed method of Android UI development. After more than two years in public development, it has hit the milestone many developers have been waiting for: an official 1.0 release. Alongside a stable release of Android Studio Arctic Fox, Jetpack Compose is ready for use in production code.
When Apple announced that it was bringing widgets to iOS, it was hard not to be a little bit jealous as an Android user. Yes, we've had widgets since the beginning, but they've been so badly neglected for so long that most of them look awful — even Google's own — and there's no consistency in the way work. iPhone widgets are much more rigid and they look a lot better for it. Thankfully, Google is finally giving widgets the attention they've long needed.
Facebook's Android apps are rarely the best way to actually use Facebook on smartphones. That's why various third-party options have sprung up over the years, giving users better interfaces, smaller and faster apps, and just generally improving the experience. But it looks like Facebook is tired of being shown up: two popular "wrappers" for the site, Swipe and Simple Social, have disappeared from the Play Store.
Google I/O is one of the high points of any Android fan's tech calendar. Last year the developer conference was scrubbed out of said schedule because of the COVID-19 pandemic, with too little warning to even organize an online replacement. This year it still isn't safe enough for an in-person conference, but Google is prepared enough for a virtual event.
For half a year there's been a huge storm brewing over app store platforms, the money that they make, and who gets to keep how much of it. It all came to a head when Epic dared Apple and Google to kick Fortnite off of the App Store and Play Store for working around the usual in-app purchase revenue split. Long story short: Apple and Google did just that, and the legal battle is ongoing. But the fallout is affecting other parts of the industry.