The Google Play Store is the biggest, and safest, way for users to get apps for Android devices. For that reason alone, developers are keen to get their apps in the store, but Google first has to vet those applications in a review process. In the past week, Google has quietly increased the amount of time it takes for a new Android app to go through the Play Store approval process.
First noted by Choice of Games, Google seems to be implementing this longer approval process for new apps in the Play Store. When submitting a new app, a banner appears where Google says that it will “take more time to thoroughly review” the app to “better protect [its] users.”
This change is good for Google when it comes to preventing malware and other threats from potentially seeing wide distribution in the Play Store. However, there have been concerns from developers. Most frustratingly, this banner appears after the app has been submitted for approval. Google details on a support page that developers should include a buffer period of around three days when submitting a new app.
Google didn’t give proper warning about this change. In a post from April, Google mentioned that it would be taking more time for apps from new developer accounts. In this example, though, the developer account has been in use since 2010 and still saw a waiting period for the app to be approved.
A member of the Android Developer team also took to Reddit to further explain some concerns regarding the matter. He mentions that a “variety of factors” can add to the review period. One of those is a developer account that is “still establishing a track record” with Google. Reviews for established developers are still “quite fast.” XDA-Developers points out the support page also mentions that “certain developer accounts” might be affected by this change.
If an app is affected by this longer review period, Google will place an estimate for how long the process should take on the developer dashboard.
Note: For certain developer accounts, we’ll take more time to thoroughly review your app(s) to help better protect users. You’ll receive a notification on your app’s Dashboard about how long this should take. We recommend that you adjust your planning to include a buffer period of at least three days between submitting your app and going live.
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