Google to remove apps from the Play Store that ask for SMS and Call Log permissions
by Cosmin Vasile / Jan 14, 2019, 7:32 PM
Today, the search giant announced that it will start removing all apps asking for SMS or Call Log permissions from the Google Play Store over the next few weeks. Developers who have not submitted a permission declaration form will have their apps removed from the Google Play Store.
If that happens, they have two choices: submit a new version without these permissions, or submit a new version that retains these permissions, but complete a special declaration form inside the Play Console. This declaration will give developers an extension until March 9 to remove the permissions or receive approval for their use case.
Google's move is meant to eliminate those cases where apps asking for SMS and Call Log permissions would enable experiences that would not require this level of access. The new policy will certainly restrict developer access to SMS and Call Log permissions and further improve users' control over their data.
Posts: 2264; Member since: Apr 15, 2016
I hope that SMS backup and restore will work still. That's such a good tool.
posted on Jan 14, 2019, 7:58 PM 4
Posts: 1583; Member since: Aug 15, 2011
Bravo Google, there is no need phone number to play game or apps.
posted on Jan 14, 2019, 7:58 PM 12
Posts: 6589; Member since: Jul 11, 2012
Well hold on for a second here. There was an app I was playing around with a few years ago. It allowed me to send texts from my bro's phone without his knowledge. It was hilarious as hell...and for the most part very wrong I suppose...but still very entertaining lol. Yeah yeah I suppose....clean up the store, and all the stupid flashlight apps that need internet access (there are idiots in every camp... special needs require special actions).
posted on Jan 14, 2019, 8:20 PM 7
Posts: 383; Member since: Jul 04, 2015
My phone call recording app sent out a notified that they are screwed here. They are moving to the Samsung app store and Amazon iirc. I undid auto updates for my app so hopefully I'll be able to retain caller ID info etc. New app will not be as robust.
posted on Jan 14, 2019, 11:18 PM 0
Posts: 6894; Member since: Dec 02, 2011
Both on iOS and Android an app can’t access anything unless the user specifically allows it to; when I see an app that is not supposed to use my call logs/contacts, sms, location asking me to, I just say no; 90% of the time I just uninstall those apps, but when I don’t, on iOS they just work without those permisions, on Android sometimes the apps don’t even start. It’s a good thing that google is screening the apps before they even get to the user.
posted on Jan 15, 2019, 2:59 AM 1
I am glad Tasker will keep this functionality and won't be removed from the Play store.
posted on Jan 15, 2019, 3:05 AM 0
Posts: 21; Member since: Oct 19, 2017
It's only one app. For many other apps, even though it makes perfect sense for them to still have these permissions, they got restricted too much. On Google's issue tracker, there are now 828 people that starred a request (here: issuetracker.google.com/issues/117486314 ) to avoid this huge restriction on apps.
posted on Jan 16, 2019, 4:40 AM 0
Have you read the Issue tracker? Since a load of them are about..... Tasker! But not only Tasker is getting exempted, other automation tools as well. There are tools like SMS backup and call recorders who are getting screwed over by this, which is a shame (I have used ACR pro in the past). Hopefully, Google will learn the difference between apps that are actually quite useful and need permission compared to games who absolutely don't need access to call/SMS functionality. So I do agree Google went overboard with this
posted on Jan 16, 2019, 5:50 AM 0
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