Android 13’s successor could make it impossible to sideload outdated apps

What you need to know

  • A potential new change arriving with Android 14 may prevent users from sideloading outdated apps on their devices.
  • Google is said to be planning to enforce stricter API limitations that will block apps that don’t meet minimum requirements.
  • Third-party app stores may also be unable to install apps that fall short of the upcoming guidelines.

The old practice of sideloading outdated apps onto older Android versions frequently leads to the spread of malware, but Google may be attempting to put a stop to it in the next version of its mobile operating system.

Code sleuths over at 9to5Google (opens in new tab) have spotted a change in the AOSP (Android Open-Source Project), which indicates that Android 13‘s successor will block the installation of outdated apps targeting older Android versions, regardless of the source. This means users won’t be able to download certain outdated apps from the Google Play Store and third-party app stores, as well as perform sideloading, once Android 14 becomes public.

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