No more audio recording apps on the Play Store, says Google

A person might want to record their call due to many reasons. It could be a call packed with instructions for something that you don’t have the time to note down, a means to have reassurance and evidence about a conversation that you might want to reference later on, and more.

It seems, though, that Google sees more negatives than positives when it comes to this topic. Starting May 11, 2022, it will officially make changes to the Google Play Store policies that will disallow any Android call recording apps to exist.

The information is coming from Reddit user NLL Apps, who says the new policy will influence the Accessibility API. Until now, developers were using the Accessibility API to get around Google’s previous changes that were making it harder for such apps to exist, something that the company has been slowly but surely working on, and it seems this is the final nail in the coffin. (via 91mobiles)

Google itself also came out to address the policy changes in a developer webinar. “The Accessibility API is not designed and cannot be requested for remote call audio recording,” says the search giant. The reasons behind this decision are probably what you have already guessed—privacy and security.

A small saving grace

The good news is that even though Play Store apps won’t be able to offer call recording anymore, that’s not true for pre-installed first-party ones. For example, if your phone already comes with some form of native call recording you will still be able to use it.During the webinar where the company addressed this change, Google stated that as long as the app is the default dialer or is pre-loaded, it does not need accessibility capability to access the incoming audio stream, and won’t be a violation.

Who knows, some new loophole might come around later on. For now, however, it seems developers will either have to comply with the new policy. If not, Google might very well take down the apps that fail to do so.

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