Google moves to limit Android App Background Location Tracking

Google to limit Android App Background Location Tracking

All apps got to be evaluated and it seems like most will lose the power to trace your location by Nov. 3.

If you're worried about Android apps tracking your location within the background, Google is taking action to place your mind at rest and stop it from happening unless there is a excellent reason.

In a post on the Android Developers Blog, Krish Vitaldevara, Director of Product Management Trust & Safety for Google Play, explains how a replacement review process is being implemented for apps.

The review may be a response to users posing for more protection against background location tracking by apps in Android 10 or earlier.

Google found many apps were requesting background location tracking, but didn't need it to function. Vitaldevara explains, "In fact, many of those apps could provide an equivalent user experience by only accessing location when the app is visible to the user.

We want to form it easier for users to settle on when to share their location and that they should not be asked for a permission that the app doesn't need."

With that in mind, the Google Play policy is being updated to need developers gain approval for accessing location data within the background. The evaluation are going to be administered by Google and it'll even be applied to Google's own apps. The factors the evaluation will consider include:

Does the feature deliver clear value to the user?
Would users expect the app to access their location within the background?
is that the feature important to the first purpose of the app?
are you able to deliver an equivalent experience without accessing location within the background?

Google is updating the Google Play policy in April followed by developer feedback requests beginning in May to assist them make any appropriate changes to their apps.

From Aug. 3, all new apps submitted to the Play store must undergo the evaluation process if they need to access location data within the background. The more important deadline is Nov. 3, though, as this is often when existing apps got to be approved by to continue using background location data.

Looking ahead, Google has plans to extend user control over location data even further in Android 11. you will be ready to , "grant a short lived “one-time” permission to sensitive data like location.

When users select this feature , apps can only access the info until the user moves faraway from the app, and that they must then request permission again for subsequent access."

The crack down on location tracking is timely seeing as Google currently faces an EU investigation over user tracking via their location. It's already possible to urge Google to quit tracking you, but you are doing got to jump through a couple of hoops to urge back your privacy.

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