GOOGLE PULLS POPULAR APP ‘REMOVE CHINESE APPS’ FROM PLAY STORE
The Android and search giant Google pulls a popular Indian-developed app from its Play Store which was designed to find and remove Chinese apps from smartphones. However, the subject app which is a top trending app in India practically known as ‘Remove Chinese Apps’ according to Google’s confirmation to Gadgets 360 was removed from its apps store having violated its Deceptive Behavior Policy, a policy that prohibits software from misleading or encouraging users into “removing or disabling third-party apps”.
The subject app as of last month already has more than 5 million downloads that enable users to detect and easily get rid of apps developed by Chinese firms, was removed from Android’s marquee app store. This is also based on the fact that an app on Google Play Store cannot make any changes to the user’s device settings or the features outside of the app without the user’s consent, let alone, mislead or encourage users into removing or disabling third-party apps.
The popularity of this Indian-developed app emerged in India as a result of growing concern among many anti-China citizens as tensions due to the Himalayan border dispute escalate. Based on this, a good number of Indian celebrities have called on fellow Indians to delete Chinese apps from their phones, such as TikTok. In the same vein, it was also figured out that India’s ruling party BJP is strongly behind the move. To ascertain this fact, TechCrunch also noted a BJP spokeswoman ‘Nupur Sharma’ made it clear that it was “great to see concerned citizens setting an example” and “we ought to hit them where it hurts most”.
Before Google pulled ‘Remove Chinese Apps’ from its store, it was also noted that the app worked by scanning phones in search of Chinese-developed apps such as ByteDance’s TikTok and Alibaba’s UC Browser, giving the option to keep or remove. But, if after scanning and no Chinese-developed app was found on the phone, a pop-up notification which read “You are awesome, no China app found”, will be seen.
In another dimension, the Chinese state-run Global Times news outlet spelled it on Tuesday that if the Indian government allows the continuation of what it calls “irrational anti-China sentiment”, it risks ruining bilateral relations that are “likely to draw tit-for-tat punishment from Beijing”.
Meanwhile, anger directed to TikTok by Indian users resulted in a release of an Indian-developed alternative app known as Mitron. But, funny enough, Mitron has also been removed from Google Play Store for violating its policies according to CNBCTV18.
The developer of ‘Remove Chinese Apps’, OneTouch AppLabs, confirmed the removal of the app on its website, although, it claimed the app was only designed for educational purposes, and not to “promote or force people to uninstall any of the application(s)”.
Also, a very close confidant of Modi and India’s home minister ‘Amit Shah’ made it clear earlier this week that the nation’s 1.3 billion citizens are its strength, adding that if they “decide not to buy foreign goods, India’s economy will see a jump”.
What is your take as Google pulls the subject app from its store?