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Google bans ‘repetitive content’ from Play Store, Gmail and Inbox somehow unaffected

Google's new policy update for the Play Store includes the banning of "repetitive content." Have you looked in the mirror, Google?

Published onJuly 27, 2018

  • A new set of Google Play Store policy updates brings some sweeping changes to the platform.
  • Among the apps that are now banned are crypto miners and apps geared towards children but containing adult themes.
  • “Repetitive content” is also now banned, which is delightfully ironic because Google.

The Chrome Web Store’s content policies got a big overhaul recently, so it was only a matter of time before the Google Play Store followed suit. That day has come, as we recently learned that a huge sweep of Google Play Store policy updates just landed.

Almost all the updates have to do with banning or limiting content that the Play Store will host.

The broadest (and in some ways most comical) update is that Google will now ban “multiple apps with highly similar content and user experience,” or “apps that are created by an automated tool, wizard service, or based on templates and submitted to Google Play by the operator of that service on behalf of other persons.” The second half makes perfect sense, but the first half? Ummm…Google, have you looked in the mirror lately? Gmail and Inbox are growing ever closer to being pretty much the same, and that’s not the only example of the company’s endless app overlap.

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Continuing on, Google will also ban crypto mining applications. This isn’t too surprising, as crypto miners were also banned from the Chrome Web Store due to rogue apps mining crypto without users knowing that’s what they do.

Applications which “facilitate the sale of explosives, firearms, ammunition, or certain firearms accessories” are also now banned. This one will likely ruffle the feathers of some Americans, but there are apps out there that train you on how to make your own guns and explosives. I think the Play Store can live without apps like that.

The final three types of apps that are now banned get filed in the “This makes perfect sense, why hasn’t this always been the case?” category. Those apps include:

  • Applications clearly geared towards children which actually include adult themes
  • Apps that serve no purpose other than pushing advertisements to users
  • Apps that purposefully mislead users in some fashion

If you have a few hours to spare, you can read the entire Google Developer Policy here.

NEXT: How to find purchased apps on the Google Play Store

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