Google Play has announced a series of initiatives aimed at bolstering the platform’s overall experience and steer users away from low-quality applications.
Verification requirements update
Earlier this year, Google Play introduced an expanded set of verification requirements for all developers, a move to empower users to make informed choices, combat malware, and reduce fraud. The company has now provided details on how developers with existing accounts can comply with these updated requirements.
Recognising the diverse priorities of developers, Google Play allows them to set their own deadlines for completing account verification. Developers can choose their preferred deadline through Play Console, with automatic assignments for those who don’t decide by 29 February 2024.
Mandatory testing for new developer accounts
To enhance app quality, Google Play is implementing mandatory app testing for developers with newly-created personal Play Console accounts. Starting soon, these developers will be required to test their apps with at least 20 people for a minimum of two weeks before seeking access to production.
This proactive approach aims to identify and address issues, garner feedback, and ensure a polished app before launch. This requirement will be visible in Play Console for new personal developer accounts in the coming days.
Increased investment in app reviews
As mobile apps become more sophisticated, so do abuse methodologies. Google Play is responding by increasing its investment in app review processes.
While overall review timelines are not expected to change significantly, certain apps – particularly those designed for children or requesting specific device permissions – may undergo deeper scrutiny. This step is crucial to maintaining a safe and trusted environment for users.
Boosting high-quality app discovery
Recognising the global and regional diversity of the Android ecosystem, Google Play is working to ensure that every user can easily discover the best content tailored to their needs. The platform is providing users with information on how an app may perform on their specific devices and is surfacing more high-quality local and regional content.
In the upcoming year, Google Play plans to introduce new signifiers to app listings, starting with a badge identifying official government apps.
These changes collectively aim to connect users with safe, high-quality, and relevant experiences. Developers investing time and money in delivering great experiences should benefit from these changes.
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