Developers Dismayed as Apps Wrongfully Unpublished from Market?


Looks like a nastier-than-usual hiccup has hit the Android market this morning. Several developers are reporting on Google’s support forums that all of their apps have been unpublished without warning and without apparent just cause. I can’t confirm or deny the claims that these apps have not violated the TOS in any way considering the app makers didn’t disclose which ones they were responsible for.

Look no further than here, here, and here to see but a few of the complaints and a whole lot of confusion. One developer even insists Google once featured his app – which would lend credence to the fact that there has been an error. Was Google cleaning some spam up recently and accidentally removed the wrong apps? Is it just a hiccup that’ll be resolved shortly? Or is something else going on here?

Google has yet to respond to any of the threads at their support site, but it’s still early in the AM so we’ll give them a bit of time. For both users and developers, I hope whatever’s going on gets situated soon enough. [Thanks, David!]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. I don’t know if this is related, but last night I downloaded the new version of Google Translate. This morning I opened up the downloads section of Market and even though it was still installed, it had vanished from the list. Very odd.

  2. @Khalid mine is still there. i love the new google translate btw

  3. People are already hesitant to develop for Android, and things like this definitely aren’t helping. I really hope Google fixes up the market and related issues with it because it’s clearly of key importance to the majority of users to have a strong apps store.

  4. I’ve been doing a lot of copyright app reporting recently and noticed that a lot of the ones I’d flagged have disappeared. There’s definately cleaning going on, maybe these guys were done by mistake. If they just have stupid sliding puzzles though they can f*k off and stay off the market.

  5. by doing that to his mouth, it looks like hes angry, sad, and also looks like he has a stache. hahaha

  6. I’ve been flagging a ton of blatant copyright violation, as well as miscategorized apps lately as well… Like the fact that the Cards & Casino Games category is chocked full of “Sexy Girl Wallpaper”, etc… None of these posters want to disclose the nature of their apps, so, good riddance imo

  7. I’m the guy with the featured app that disappeared. I had to republish all 3 apps to get them back. Huge hassle – 9 screenshots per app. The iBird app was #7 best selling reference app so I was mortified it would be ranked last after republishing. Fortunately it resumed it’s position.

  8. @Mitch

    Sorry your app got removed. If my dad had an Android phone, he’d be all over it.
    On that subject, I have a suggestion: promote your Android app on your website. I clicked your name, and there’s NOTHING on the main page of website suggesting that the app is available for Android.

  9. Seems this happens more than people realize, and this instance is probably just a larger occurence than usual. I cant count on two hands how many times an app that I have downloaded has disappeared from the market without warning (legitimate, useful apps, not even talking about the copied ones, or blatant porn ones). I think it would help if Google gave some type of warning, saying something like “this application will be removed in one day.”

  10. The market has spam. People complain.
    Google try to remove spam. Developers complain.

    Oh well…

  11. My app didn’t get unpublished, but there is something wrong with the market dashboard. Instead of the text being horizontal, everything is being jammed in vertically.

  12. My apps were unpublished and they are totally legit! All the free versions have 4 star ratings and lots of downloads. I don’t know what the reason was but I have reported it to Google and I will let Phandroid know if I get a response.

  13. Sorry folks messed up the URL to our site click on this post instead.


  14. I noticed my app wasn’t showing up on a market search. I logged into the market, saw it was unpublished, so I clicked publish, and it’s back. Glitch?

  15. My app was unpublished. It is not spam. Even if it was Google should email me about unpublishing it. The issue is well over a day old at this stage. Google are moving at their usual lightning pace.

    Thanks for shining some light on the issue Quentyn.

  16. This is not about cleaning up. Uploaded a brandnew App, developed specifically for US and without any chance of inflicting copyrights. It was published and (as far as I can tell) unpublished an hour later.

  17. The numbers in the app market maybe be cut by 3rd or more if developers don’t bother to republish old apps?

  18. Hi, I am not sure if this is cleaning up or a glitch. I was checking my phone today and all apps had vanished from the market “My Apps” section, even Google ones like GMail, Youtube, also partner ones like Adobe Flash, Reader, etc.

    In my case, the apps were still on the phone and also in the market to find and install, but just not showing in My Apps.

    Interestingly enough, when I checked something like Google Maps, it was saying installed from the market page, just not showing up in My Apps.


  19. thanks for the tip Lewis, you are right, doesn’t mention iBird and neither does Thing is I am reluctant to advertise it with the way it seems to disappear in the market. I agree with Anuj about how this is not a confidence builder for developers using the Android market. There is a recent article in the NYT were the author presented how difficult it is to find what are the best apps on a specific subject on the Android market. The Apple App store is so much more sophisticated than Google’s. I really want Google to get their act together, and I do see them improving their store, but the zone of silence on this topic of concern is just not building my confidence. Apple is not easy to communicate with but at least they have a set of email address to use when you have a problem as a developer. And they have answered me frequently. PLEASE GOOGLE LISTEN TO YOUR MOST IMPORTANT ASSETS – YOUR DEVELOPER COMMUNITY.

  20. I curently have a lg vortex with android 2.2 and when I woke up this morning my phone was shut off completly. I had it on when I went to bed. I tried to turn it on when I woke up and It didnt go past the main screen that says LG it just froze and If someone could tell me how to fix it it would help me out a bunch… thank you.

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