Google introduced several new Play Stores features lately along with revamping the rating system of the apps to boost the user experience. Now, the search giant has come up with a new Play Store feature that will remind users to uninstall unused or old apps, thus helping users free up space.
New Play Store feature – how it could help?
This new Play Store feature suggests a list of apps that users may uninstall to free up some space on their Android phones. Android Police notes that this new feature is similar to Google’s uninstall manager, which was rolled out in 2016.
Google’s new Play Store feature could prove very useful. Almost every smartphone user accumulates apps on their phone over time. Those apps would have been useful when they were installed, but a user might not need them any more. Additionally, a user might also forget to uninstall them once they stop using them.
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Now, the Play Store would remind users to uninstall unused or old apps. This new Play Store feature was first spotted by Netherlands-based Android World.
The Play Store would send users a notification, informing them to “remove unused apps for extra storage.” Clicking the notification will bring up the list of the apps that the user has not used for a while.
Each of the apps on the list comes with a description along with informing users the last time it was used. A user can then select the apps to be uninstalled. After this, the Play Store tells the amount of space that will be freed up after uninstalling them.
As of now, it is not clear if this new Play Store feature is available to all, or is in the testing phase. Also, it is not known what criteria Google uses to select the apps for the list, i.e., for how long must the apps be unused to appear in the list.
Overhauling Play Store’s rating system
Recently, Google at the I/O conference revealed a new rating system for the apps. This new system, which would come in force in August, would focus more on the latest reviews.
“So instead of a lifetime cumulative value, your Google Play Store rating will be recalculated to give more weight to your most recent ratings. Users won’t see the updated rating in the Google Play Store until August, but you can preview your new rating in the Google Play Console today,” the search giant said in a blog post.
Google also recently added a feature that would allow users to buy apps for cash. Google is also adding a suggested replies feature, which would make it easier for the developers to reply to the reviews that users have left on the Play Store. Developers would get three suggested replies to respond to the reviews. Also, developers would be able to customize the responses.
Avoid these Android apps
Apart from this new Play Store feature in which users are notified about uninstalling unused apps, Google last month also advised users against installing certain apps due to security reasons.
As per an analysis by BuzzFeed, several Android apps have been sharing data they collect with the Chinese government. According to BuzzFeed, these apps were among the most downloaded apps on the Play Store.
One of the apps that BuzzFeed pointed out is a selfie app that has been downloaded over 50 million times. The app has thousands of reviews and has a 4.5-star rating. In 2017, the search giant even recognized it as the most popular new app in the UK.
Other flagged apps include Total Cleaner, Smart Cooler, Selfie Camera, WaWaYaYa, AIO Flashlight and Samsung TV Remote Control.
Lifehacker, in a follow-up report, claimed that the apps in question were downloaded 100 million times in total, and that the developers of the app didn’t reveal their country of origin or who owns the app.
Google has banned these and several other apps after the report from BuzzFeed.
One thing that should ring a warning bell about such apps is that they ask users for all types of permissions, including access to location, and even personal contact information. For instance, the AIO Flashlight app, which was flagged by BuzzFeed, asked for all sorts of permissions even when an app as simple as a flashlight would only need one or two permissions max.