Google updated its Play Store policies that aim to address issues with intrusive ads, VPNs, misinformation, impersonation of brands and child abuse among others.
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The company will no longer allow full screen interstitial ads of all formats like video, GIF, static that show unexpectedly, when the user has chosen to do something else.
Full screen ads that are not closeable after 15 seconds will also not be allowed.
Developers must ensure that apps clearly disclose how a user can manage or cancel their subscription and must include an easy-to-use, online method to cancel the subscription.
They must also notify users of any changes to their subscription, cancellation and refund policies and ensure that they comply with applicable law.
Google will apply these policies from September 30.
The company will not allow apps that mislead users by impersonating someone else like another developer, company, entity and another app or falsely pretending to be affiliated to the government.
They must not use app icons, descriptions, titles, or in-app elements that could mislead users about the app’s relationship to some other app, Google said.
The technology company will not allow apps with health misinformation like misleading claims about vaccines or advocacy of harmful, unapproved treatments.
These will be applicable from August 31.
Apps that use the VPNService must document use of the VPNService in the Google Play listing, and must encrypt the data from the device to VPN tunnel end point.
The VPNService cannot be used to collect personal and sensitive user data without prominent disclosure and consent, redirect user traffic from other apps for monetization purposes.
This will be applicable from November 1.
The US-based company will immediately remove the apps that do not prohibit users from creating, uploading, or distributing content that involve abuse of children.