Some changes are being made to the Google Play Store. Each new feature and improvement is intended for the benefit of all developers and users. Google just announced new policy updates. There are for mobile applications officially distributed through the Google Play Store. One change that will bring the biggest impact is for Android 11 applications. Developers will no longer see which Android applications are installed on a device. This is part of Google’s efforts to restrict the use of sensitive or high-risk permissions.
The QUERY_ALL_PACKAGES permission will be limited. Not all applications can use it now. This permission “It gives visibility to the inventory of applications installed on a specific device.”
This means Rule It will be applied in mobile applications that use API 30+ for devices with Android 11 or later. It’s not actually a new policy, but implementation has been delayed on the Google Play Store due to the pandemic. The policy will go into effect on May 5, 2021.
This is what is written on the Play Console Help:
“Play considers the device inventory of installed applications queried from a user’s device as personal and confidential information, and the use of permission is only allowed when the main function or purpose of the application for the user requires broad visibility of applications installed on the user’s device “.
So which apps can still use the permission? Those applications that are used as browsers, antivirus, device search and file managers. Then Google will ask the developers to explain and “Justify why a less intrusive method of application visibility will not allow core user-facing functionality to comply with your application policies.”
As a developer, you have to give a good reason why you need inventory visibility of installed applications. Should be “Directly related to the main purpose or main functionality that users access within your application.”
Google will continue to offer temporary exceptions, primarily to banking and digital wallet applications. One reason is that they get app visibility for security reasons.