Google fights fragmentation: New Android features to be forced on apps in 2018

Enlarge / The Google Play Developer Console will stop accepting old apps in 2018. (credit: Google Play)

While Apple’s app store is heavily regulated, the Google Play Store has mostly lived its life under Google’s laissez-faire attitude. As long as you didn’t get caught by Google’s malware scanning, your app was free to do just about anything.

But lately, Google’s hands-off approach seems to be changing. The company tried to restrict Android’s powerful accessibility APIs only to accessibility apps, but after a power user revolt, Google is currently rethinking that plan.

The Play Store’s biggest change is coming in 2018, though. Recently Google announced it will start setting a minimum API level that new and updated apps will be required to use. This is a technical change but a massive one. Basically, Google will stop accepting old app code from developers. The move won’t harm support for devices running old versions of Android, but it will require developers to adopt new Android features and restrictions as they come out.

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Source:: Arstechnica – Gadgets