Feeds

Android comes with a kill-switch

Only for use if device discovers human emotion

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Google has put itself in charge of policing Android devices. The search giant is retaining the right to delete applications from Android handsets on a whim.

Unlike Apple, the company has made no attempt to hide its intentions, and includes the details in the Android Market terms and conditions, as spotted by Computer World:

Google may discover a product that violates the developer distribution agreement ... in such an instance, Google retains the right to remotely remove those applications from your device at its sole discretion.

But the existence of the capability opens more questions about the platform.

The clause only covers applications distributed through the Android Market, but the whole point of Android is that anyone can distribute any applications they like. Mobile publisher Handango has already stated it will be selling Android applications through its web site.

So will Google be able to remove applications installed by someone else? We've asked Handango and the Open Handset Alliance (nominal owners of Android), but haven't heard back as yet.

Such a mechanism also implies that Android devices will be regularly reporting back to Google to download the latest list of unapproved applications.

Quite how that will operate isn't clear, but we've asked the questions and look forward to letting you know exactly how much control Google will be exerting over the G1 once we hear back. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
BEST EVER broadband? Oh no you DIDN'T, Sky – ad watchdog
Rival BT moaned that claim was misleading
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Managing SSL certificates with ease
The lack of operational efficiencies and compliance pitfalls associated with poor SSL certificate management, and how the right SSL certificate management tool can help.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.