Google Play’s Anti-Crypto Mining App Policy has so far Been Unsuccessful
Since the creation of Bitcoin, cryptocurrency mining has majorly been done by powerful desktop computers or ASICs.
However, things changed when mining became popular and some companies decided to create applications that allow mobile devices to mine.
Google banned crypto mining apps from Play Store
It didn’t take long for those apps to gain popularity in the crypto world, with users looking to accumulate coins via an easy-to-use, ‘set and forget’ mobile program.
Search engine giant Google, however, sought to put an end to this. In July, the company released a policy update, specifically acknowledged crypto mining. Google wrote:
We don’t allow apps that mine cryptocurrency on devices. We permit apps that remotely manage the mining of cryptocurrency.
This meant that all apps that provide an in-house mining feature would be banned and removed from Google’s Play Store, which is the primary app store for Android devices. Things haven’t played out that way though.
A recent article from The Next Web’s cryptocurrency column revealed that the ban on crypto mining apps hasn’t been 100% effective.
JSECoin mining apps go unnoticed on Play Store for long
In its report, TNW pointed out an app called JSECoin. It is a UK-based blockchain startup that is looking to provide browser-based mining services as an alternative to mining. This means that JSE is looking to emulate what CoinHive did.
JSE announced recently that it has launched its own program onto the Google’s Play Store platform.
The primary function of the JSECoin app is to remotely manage a mining operation. It has a secondary function through which allows users to mine directly using their phones. This particular function goes against Google’s newly instated policy.
JSECoin’s co-founder and CTO, John Sim while talking about this stated that the company didn’t mean any harm when they introduced this feature.
Google later removed the app from its Play Store after back and forth between the firm and Google. Sim later commented that Google had temporarily suspended the app, adding that Google wouldn’t even allow a power CPU consumption mining mode which they provided.
Even though JSE violated Google’s policy terms, there are other apps still present on the Play Store that aren’t following Google’s rules. One of such apps is MinerGate, which claims to provide a way to make mobile crypto fortune and to mine on the go.
Doubts still exist over the function of MinerGate even though the app has over a million downloads and a perfect 5-star reviews. One of the doubters is James Dawson-Shaw who wrote:
(It’s) Impossible to make money using a mobile device. Could work on a VERY HIGH SPEC computer to make £5 a month. Other than that, the company is the only thing making money.
He isn’t alone on this as other outraged individuals claimed much of the same. There were other users who reported issues using the app. MinerGate hasn’t been updated for roughly three months now.
There are hundreds of apps on the Play Store which claim to support mobile mining and even though it is hard to know if they all do, they are still listed where Google was supposed to ban them from.
Google, in a recent article, stated that it has only allowed these apps due to its grace period system which means that they can’t act upon their rulings immediately they are filed.
The explanation doesn’t tell us how JSE was able to evade Google’s all-watching radar.
Google has banned crypto-related apps before
Google hasn’t always been lenient with crypto-related apps on its platform. Late last month, Google unexpectedly dropped MetaMask, a popular DApp, and Ethereum browser solution, from its desktop-focused store
However, Google like other big companies in the world is slowly warming up to blockchain and cryptocurrencies.