Google to limit outdated apps from Play Store over security concerns

Google Play Store is reportedly looking to limit access to outdated apps, with all current apps being required to maintain the target level of API within two years of any Android OS release beginning November 1st.

If the criterion is not met, the corporation will restrict users' ability to discover and install them. According to sources, these modifications are facilitated so that the applications available on the marketplace comply with Android's most recent security and privacy features.

Krish Vitaldevara, the Product Management Director at Google, asserted that mobile users hope to get the most out of Android's security protections, and enhancing their API target level will prevent them from installing older apps that may not have such mechanisms in place.

There are, however, a couple of caveats to be aware of.

The first is that the constraint would apply only if a device has been running a more recent version of Android than the app's API level. As a result, anyone operating an older version of the Android operating system will be able to download the apps.

Secondly, users who have earlier downloaded any apps will be required to reinstall them even if the version has not been updated.

It is worth noting that developers will be able to apply for a six-month extension should their software not be fully prepared by the November 1st deadline.

In the same context, Google has a uniform policy for newly updated apps that are requested for review, declaring that an app must focus on an API level within a year of the latest Android OS release to be sold on the marketplace.

This new policy ensures that existing and presumably neglected apps are covered in the scope, rather than just those receiving updates. Interestingly, major tech platforms such as Snapchat and Facebook had previously aimed at keeping older Android APIs to avoid newly developed, more restrictive policies.

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By Shreya Bhute

With corporate exposure in software and marketing, Shreya was always intrigued by content development. Having pursued her graduation in I.T. engineering, she works as a content writer for and jots down news articles across distinct domains including technology, business and healthcare.