Android Q: Google to shame developers for not updating their apps?

By | 4th September 2018

Android Pie Gesture Navigation

  • Android Q could show a warning message when users run apps made for Lollipop and older.
  • The message is ostensibly meant to push developers to update their app for Android Pie.


Android P has been out for several weeks now, but that doesn’t mean Google is taking it easy. In fact, it looks like Android Q will aggressively push developers to update their apps.

A new commit on the Android Open Source Project (spotted by XDA-Developers) shows Android Q could display a warning message if users try to run an app made for Lollipop and older. From this message, users are prompted to either dismiss the alert or check for an update.

A warning set to appear in Android Q. XDA-Developers

Google would seemingly be shaming developers into updating their apps then, but an updated app does have benefits. By targeting Android Pie, the app could take advantage of new additions to the mobile platform.

Some of the more prominent Android Pie enhancements include Adaptive Battery (prioritizing battery power for your most used apps), App Actions (predicting what you’re likely to do in an app), and App Slices (havings bits of an app UI surface in Google Search). So updating an app to play nice with some of these features seems like a wise move anyway.

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If your app hasn’t been updated since the Lollipop years, you’d also potentially gain access to other Android additions by targeting the latest update. These legacy features include granular permissions, notification channels/dots, and voice interactions.

According to XDA, it seems like Google won’t actually stop users from running older apps. This is a wise move, because there are scores of niche apps that don’t get updated, but are still used by many. But we wonder whether a warning message could be detrimental to bedroom coders and other small-time developers with little in the way of resources. After all, the likes of Starbucks, Reddit and Facebook can afford to devote time and resources to updating their apps.

What do you make of Android warning users about running older apps? Sound off in the comments section below.