Mitron app may make Play Store comeback, but Remove China Apps may not, Google hinted in a blog post on Thursday. Both the apps were recently suspended from the Play Store for violating Google policies. While Mitron app was pulled from the Google Play Store for violating its spam and minimum functionality policy, Remove China Apps was removed for violating its deceptive behaviour policy.
Sameer Samat who is vice president for Android and Google Play, while clarifying the company’s actions in the blog post, said “we’ve given this developer some guidance and once they’ve addressed the issue the app can go back up on Play.” This is with reference to a “video app” which was taken down from the Play Store earlier this week. While the name of the app isn’t explicitly mentioned, it’s obvious that the app in question is Mitron.
Pitched as a “desi” alternative to TikTok, Mitron was found to be an exact rip-off of, another Android app made by a Pakistan-based developer. “We don’t allow apps that merely provide the same experience as other apps already on Google Play. Apps should provide value to users through the creation of unique content or services,” Google’s spam and minimum functionality policy says.
As for Remove China apps, the issue seems much bigger, which is probably why it doesn’t look like it’s going to make a comeback anytime soon, on the Google Play Store at least.
“We don’t allow an app that “encourages or incentivizes users into removing or disabling third-party apps or modifying device settings or features unless it is part of a verifiable security service,” Samat says in the blog post, adding that “when apps are allowed to specifically target other apps, it can lead to behavior that we believe is not in the best interest of our community of developers and consumers.”
Home grown company OneTouch AppLabs launched Remove China Apps in mid-May. The app was designed to identify the country of origin of apps installed on Android smartphones and also delete them all in one go. Though intended for educational purposes, as per the makers, Remove China Apps became a viral sensation in India soon after launch owing to the ongoing wave of strong anti-China sentiment that’s blowing across the country. So much so that it had over 10 lakh installs and counting, just days after it went live on the Play Store on May 17.