Google has changed its mobile app store policies in order to prevent developers from creating apps that will update themselves outside of the official marketplace system.
Apps downloaded from Google Play will now only be able to update through the search giant’s marketplace, putting restrictions on the way they act in a bid to improve security.
In a statement, Google said: “An app downloaded from Google Play may not modify, replace or update its own APK binary code using any method other than Google Play’s update mechanism”.
Facebook had recently altered its Android app to update itself outside of Google’s app store ecosystem and there is speculation that Google may have made its move as a pre-emptive strike before other app developers implement the same kind of changes.
However, Google has recently been tightening up security in its app ecosystem, recently removing 60,000 malicious apps from Google Play. It is possible that the new policy could be a part of a wider plan to cultivate a more secure environment for Android, in line with that which already exists for iOS.