Google Play will hide and block downloads for outdated apps starting later this year


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Aug 17, 2014
Google is preparing to clear its Play Store of outdated apps. The company warned Android app developers that starting on November 1, 2022, it will hide apps and block their installation to users’ devices if developers haven’t kept up with the latest Android OS releases. Specifically, Google said apps that don’t target an Android API within two years of the latest major Android release version will no longer be able to be discovered or installed by new users whose devices run Android OS versions that are higher than the apps’ target API level.

In short, this means that Android users who are keeping up with the latest software or those who’ve just purchased new Android phones will no longer be able to find or download old, out-of-date apps.

This should not be a significant adjustment for any active developers building for Android, as Google already requires new apps and app updates to target an Android API level within one year of the latest major Android OS version release. And any app updates submitted that also don’t meet this requirement can’t be published on Google Play.

But the change would impact fully abandoned apps or those where the developer is still serving their users but no longer keeps up with the latest Android API updates.
As Google explained in its announcement about the new policy, every Android OS update brings “privacy, security, and user experience improvements.”


Level 2
Mar 30, 2022
I'm curious, how do you feel about this change? Do you think its for the better or for worse?
In my opinion, it could be good and bad, this means old android devices might no longer have an appstore, but they probably have ways to fix that.