Aligning SDKs with Google Play Store policies
The biggest challenge for app developers is choosing a high-quality SDK that is compliant with Play policies. over the past few years, Google has been working to help make SDKs better and more secure on Google Play. As a result, in 2020, they launched the Google Play SDK Console. It provides usage statistics, crash reports, and the ability for SDK providers to communicate with app developers. It shows that more than 80% of top companies have registered and are using the SDK Console.
For app marketers and developers, based on the direct communication between SDK providers and Google Play, Google can now guide you through SDK issues. In other words, if there is a problem, the system will warn you before releasing a version with the faulty SDK version.
Android Developers hope that by improving communication between Google Play, SDK providers and app developers, they can dramatically improve the quality and security of third-party code across the Play ecosystem. Android Developers also recently launched the Google Play SDK Index, a new public portal that lists widely used commercial SDKs and provides data and insights about each one.
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Protecting apps from privacy and fraudulent activity
Another security measure of Google comes from the improvements of Play's app integrity tools. Google Play App Signing helps the millions of apps on Google Play, it ensure that app updates are trusted. However, because Play App Signing uses state-of-the-art storage to protect and manage keys, no details have been publicly disclosed. This year, Google announced that Play App Signing will use Google Cloud Key Management to protect signing keys. In addition, all developers will soon be able to perform app signing key rotation. In other words, developers will be able to trigger annual key rotations from within the Play Management Center.
For app marketers and developers, it means, with Google Cloud Key Management, you can view public documentation, including the storage specifications and security practices that Google uses to protect your keys. In other words, Google will soon be using Cloud Key Management for all newly generated keys and then securely migrating eligible existing keys.
The new Play Integrity API is now available for all apps and games. According to Google, app developers can now use the API to detect fraudulent and risky interactions, such as traffic from modified or pirated versions of apps and traffic from rooted or compromised devices. Developers such as Truecaller, Wooga and GameInsight are already using the Play Integrity API to protect their apps and games from abuses, which can lead to serious revenue loss and damage.
New data security section
On the flip side, Google has also introduced privacy and security changes, they will now be more transparent to app users. The new data security section of the app store provides a way for app developers to showcase their privacy and security methods. So that users can make informed decisions about their apps.
Supporting Application quality tools
Application quality is an important part of application business. Moreover, it affects everything. To monitor app quality in more detail, Google has introduced tools that help improve the overall quality of your app:
Development Reporting API - You can access Vitals metrics and issue data, including crash and ANR rates, counts, cluster and stack tracking, outside of the Play Management Center and integrate them into your own tools.
Crashlytics App - Developers and marketers can now link Play apps to the Crashlytics app to view play track information in Crashlytics.
Reach & Devices - By providing insights on user and issue distribution, this tool enables you to build quality business cases, no matter where you are in the lifecycle. It now includes revenue and revenue growth metrics for apps that are profitable on Play.
Android Automotive and the upcoming Wear OS - Google makes it easier for developers to test apps on different form factors, enabling them to test each of your form factors independently, both internally and openly.
In-App Update API - This API lets your app check for available updates, prompt the user, and then complete the update, all without requiring the user to leave the app. The API will now notify you if an update is available for your app within 15 minutes instead of 24 hours. The updated UI will also display your "What's New" text in the app so users know what features they're getting.
All improvements to existing Google tools and new tools designed to improve application quality checks. On the one hand, app marketers and developers now have a wider variety of different tools to help them check app performance.
On the other hand, it makes the app optimization process too complicated, as marketers need to jump from one tab to another. These changes have led to the adoption of tools by app marketers and developers who use external optimization tools such as App Radar.
In other words, every time the app store changes or improves usability, third-party tools need to change their crawl settings to collect accurate data. As a result, you may notice some issues with the Google Play Store crawl process in app optimization tools.What we can do for your app growth?
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Google Play Store redesign in 2022
Another important announcement from Google is the redesign of the Google Play desktop. You can now see the new layout and design of the desktop version of the Play Store. The main layout change applies to replacing the left sidebar with an updated, modern top navigation. The top navigation now highlights tabs for games, apps, books, movies, and kids. Also, the top right corner of the window displays your profile picture, an overflow menu of help resources, and a search button.
The main goal of the redesign of Google Play for desktop was to bring the design of the mobile and desktop versions into alignment. Since Google hasn't changed the desktop Play Store in a long time, marketers and developers were well served to encounter the new design. In addition, the new design allows you to use negative space to stand out in your app listings.
What to look for in the new 2022 Google Play Store changes?
Google comes up with many updates and improvements each year, and 2022 is no exception. Google's main focus this year is to fix existing vulnerabilities, improve security and privacy within the store, and provide more opportunities to grow apps. As a user acquisition tool, we know that even small changes can revolutionize the way app marketers and developers have worked with the Google Play Store in the past. So, don't forget to:
● Update your app's privacy terms.
● Review the new SDK and fraud protection guidelines.
● Try the updated UA features such as Custom Product Details, Product Detail Experiment, Deep Linking and Play Commerce.
Please be patient with all external tools used to optimize your Google Play app, as they will take time to adapt to the new google changes. Stay in touch with new updates!