One of the oft-cited perks of Android is that the platform offers many different devices with different user interfaces and different features. Sometimes manufacturers take advantage of this to promote their own apps and services, but according to a new report, Google is putting its foot down on that matter.
According to The Information, Google has been adding requirements for “dozens” of Android manufacturers that include things like an increase in the number of preinstalled Google apps to as many as 20 as well as prominent home screen placement for Google apps and Google Search. Other new requirements include the “OK Google” hotword and the presence of a Google trademark or the phrase “Powered by Android” at powerup.
Some of the manufacturers affected by these requirements include HTC, Huawei and Samsung.
We’ve seen companies offer up their own services that are similar to Google’s, like HTC’s BlinkFeed and Samsung’s own app store, which can divert attention from Google’s offerings. These new requirements from Google appear to be a way to make its own offerings more present to users and to highlight the fact that Android devices are, in fact, running Android.