Google’s doing its part to get rid of those crappy apps in the Play Store


Whenever you think about the Play Store and the sheer number of apps that are at your disposal, it’s impossible to find them all. According to Statista, as of December 2020, there were more than 2.9 million apps on the Play Store in total. This is actually down from the 3.6 million apps that were available all the way back in March of 2018.

With so many apps to choose from, there’s a lot going on when you type in a simple keyphrase to find something. Most of the time you’ll be able to quickly find the app you are looking for, but that only really works when looking for apps with a specific title. More generic app names are tougher to digest and sift through, and scummy app developers are doing everything they can to get your attention before trying to get your information or make you pay for features.

Yesterday, Google detailed a series of new guidelines for app developers to follow when creating app names and graphics. In the post in the Android Developers Blog, the company announced two new changes that are arriving:

  1. Pre-announcing a policy change for app metadata
  2. Introducing new guidelines on Store listing preview assets

The first change includes limiting an app title to 30 characters, along with “prohibiting keywords that imply performance or promotion”. Additonally, Google is trying to get developers to cut back on adding elements to app icons that may end up leading in mislead users.

Google provided several details as to some “Dos” and “Donts”, detailing what won’t be allowed moving forward. This means that key phrases like “top” or “#1” will no longer be allowed. Plus, you won’t see egregious graphics in the app icon, with graphics like “best app in 2020” or a trophy providing indication of some type of award that was won.

We aren’t exactly sure what this means for existing Play Store listings that violate these new policies. However, Google did state that it will begin using these new guidelines for app submissions starting in the “second half of 2021”.


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