Changes announced Wednesday will allow OEMs to license individual Google apps for pre-installation on their devices (these apps come pre-installed for free with Android), and Indian users will now have the option to choose their default search engine via a selection screen that will start popping up soon. When a user sets up a new Android smartphone or tablet in India.
The Directives of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) against Google, made in the orders of October 20 and October 25, 2022, came into effect from Thursday.
Google said it takes its commitment to comply with local laws and regulations in India very seriously. “Recent directives issued by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) for Android and Play required us to make significant changes in India, and today we have informed CCI of how we are complying with their directives.”
It added that it would “continue to respectfully challenge certain aspects of CCI’s decisions” and advocate for the core principles of openness, expanding user choice, providing transparency and maintaining safety and security that have served the interests of the larger ecosystem.
Google is also updating the backend to allow partners to build incompatible or forked variants of Android. Google said user choice billing will be available for all apps and games starting next month.
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“Through the user’s choice billing system, developers can offer users the option to choose an alternative billing system besides Google Play billing when purchasing digital content within the app,” the company said in a blog post. She added that Android has always supported the installation of applications. from a variety of sources, including by sideloading, which includes downloads of the application directly from the developer’s website.
“We recently made changes to the Android installation flow and the ability to automatically update sideloaded apps and app stores while ensuring that users understand potential security risks,” the company said.