Google has revamped its Developer Program Policy Centre, making the guidelines to app developers visually attractive and simple to read, and updated the set of rules.
The Developer Program Policy Centre has newly created interactive tiles made with Google's own Material Design features:
- Restricted Content
- Intellectual Property, Deception and Spam
- Privacy and Security
- Monetization and Ads
- Store Listing and Promotion
- Updates and Other Resources
Tech Crunch reported that though Google is not as restrictive as Apple on the types of apps that the company allows developers to build, it noted how Google introduced an internal app review team in 2015 to examine any policy violations.
Google has detailed what the "restricted content" meant by explaining that it does not allow apps that contain or promoted sexually explicit content, such as pornography.
The tile on "Intellectual Property" noted Google's position to developers: "We don't allow apps or developer accounts that impersonate other entities, brands, or otherwise infringe on intellectual property rights of others (including trademark, copyright, patent, trade secret, and other proprietary rights). We also don't allow apps that encourage or induce infringement of intellectual property rights," Google said.
Google noted on its "Privacy and Security" page that app developers must be transparent on how they handle user data and have to disclose the collection, use and sharing of the data.
It also provides guidelines for in-store purchases in its "Monetization" section. Google believes that the promotion and visibility of the app affects the Store quality and has set some guidelines in its the "Store Listing and Promotion" section.
The Mountain View, California-based company noted in its Enforcement app that "Apps that may be inappropriate for a broad audience or result in a low quality experience for our end users may not be eligible for promotion on Google Play."
The search engine giant company added further that it has brought some changes and updates to its policies regarding Ads, Device and Network Abuse and User Data. It noted that it will now allow apps that contain "deceptive and disruptive ads" and the ads must not interfere with other apps or the operation of the device.
Google has said that it explicitly prohibits:
- Viruses, trojan horses, malware, spyware or any other malicious software.
- Apps designed to secretly collect device usage, such as commercial spyware apps.
It was also clear that the apps that monitor or track user's behaviour on the device must follow certain requirements like:
- Apps must not present themselves as a spying or secret surveillance solution.
- Apps must not hide or cloak tracking behaviour or attempt to mislead users about such functionality.