Google to remove apps if found in violation of 'Accessibility Services'

By Anuj Sharma - November 13, 2017
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According to media reports, unless developers clearly iterate how the app properly uses the Accessibility Services to help users who are disabled, Google will remove all app requests for accessibility....

Google has said that it will remove apps from the Play Store if found in violation of Accessibility Services. Android packs a suite of Accessibility Services that developers can use to make their apps more efficient to serve users with disabilities.

According to media reports, unless developers clearly iterate how the app properly uses the Accessibility Services to help users who are disabled, Google will remove all app requests for accessibility services.  

Below is an example of an email Google is sending out to developers that utilise any of Android’s Accessibility Services provided by the developer of BatterySaver:

“We’re contacting you because your app, BatterySaver System Shortcut, with package name com.floriandraschbacher.batterysaver.free is requesting the ‘android.permission.BIND_ACCESSIBILITY_SERVICE.’ Apps requesting accessibility services should only be used to help users with disabilities use Android devices and apps. Your app must comply’ with our Permissions policy and the Prominent Disclosure requirements of our User Data policy,” 9to5google.com reported on Monday.

Google further added in the mail: If you aren’t already doing so, you must explain to users how your app is using the ‘android.permission.BIND_ACCESSIBILITY_SERVICE’ to help users with disabilities use Android devices and apps. Apps that fail to meet this requirement within 30 days may be removed from Google Play. Alternatively, you can remove any requests for accessibility services within your app. You can also choose to unpublish your app.

Alternatively, you can choose to unpublish the app. All violations are tracked. Serious or repeated violations of any nature will result in the termination of your developer account, and investigation and possible termination of related Google accounts.

If you’ve reviewed the policy and feel we may have been in error, please reach out to our policy support team. One of my colleagues will get back to you within two business days, added Google in the mail.

 

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