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Google laying down the law on manufacturers: More Google apps and services on Android devices

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If you’ve bought an Android smartphone recently, you will notice that there are more Google apps and services on them. This has nothing to do with the manufacturers realizing the true potential for Google’s suite of apps, but merely a contractual obligation which specifies that these apps are included in every new Android device.

This essentially means that if a manufacturer needs the Google Play Store on their handset or tablet, they will have to make do with the entire set of Google apps including Google Play Books, Movies & TV etc. The contract also forces manufacturers to use the Google Search widget on the default homescreen. While some might consider this to be in contradiction to Android’s own policies of being an open platform, as long as users are allowed to change or remove the features they don’t like, it shouldn’t be much of a concern.

Below are some of the rules Google wants manufacturers to follow according to info gathered by The Information:

  • There must be a Google search “widget” on the “default home screen” of the device, along with an icon for the Google Play app store.
  • An icon on the device home screen labeled as “Google,” when clicked, must provide access to a “collection” of 13 Google apps (Google Chrome, Google Maps, Google Drive, YouTube, Gmail, Google+, Google Play Music, Google Play Movies, Google Play Books, Google Play Newsstand, Google Play Games, Google+ Photos and Google+ Hangouts).
  • Other Google apps, including Google Street View, Google Voice Search and Google Calendar, must be placed “no more than one level below the Home Screen.”
  • If device owners hold down the physical “Home” button or “swipe up” from a digital home button or navigation bar, such actions should trigger Google Search.
  • Google [has] the option to display a “Google trademark” or an “Android brand feature” on a “separate screen” when the device boots up.

What do you think of these rules? Drop your thoughts in the comments section below.

Source: The Information (subscribers only)

Via: Android Central

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