Continuing its onslaught against apps that ask for permission to access user data when it doesn’t need it for its functioning, Google has now started removing apps that seek permission to access user location when it can function without having it.In a blog post addressed to all Android developers, Google stated that all existing apps as on November 3rd 2019 along with the new ones being added will undergo a new review process which will assess whether the permission for background access asked by the app are necessary for its functioning or not. If the app is found to seek permission for background tracking when it doesn’t need it for its functioning, Google will remove it from the Play Store.
The review process starts in August this year, but developers will be allowed to seek a feedback about their app from May and make changes if required before the review is conducted later. Social media apps that allow users to share their live location with friends will be passed to seek access to background tracking but the apps like a store finder that can work fine while having access to location tracking only when the app is being used will not be allowed to use background tracking, as suggested by the blog post. The review process will apply to all Google apps as well, keeping in mind the criticism received by Apple.
Recently, Google also decided to review apps that ask for permission to view user’s call logs and text history when it was not needed for its functioning. The company stated in another blog post that it has removed 790,000 apps from Play Store, almost 98 percent of the apps that asked for permission to access to user call log and text history.