- Android 11 is going to introduce One-Time Permission feature, helping users get better privacy.
- Google says that once Android 11 is launched, apps will have time till November 2 to comply with new OS.
- One-time permission will help users curtail excessive access that apps have to private location or camera data.
How many times have you clicked "Allow" when apps want to access certain hardware data or component on your Android phone? It must have been a lot of times, inadvertently. And then once these apps have been "allowed" they keep accessing private data, such as location information, or keep using microphone etc in background, at times even when they have no business doing so. Now, Android 11 is putting an end to it.
Android 11 will be coming with a new feature called One-Time Permission, which will allow users to grant some permission to an app only for a particular moment. Next time when app needs similar permission again, it will have to ask for it. This is similar to the way one-time permissions are managed in the iPhone.
Krish Vitaldevara, director of Product Management Trust and Safety for Android, writes on the official blog that users are asking Google that they want more control on how apps use and access their location data. So, in order to prevent misuse and to take precaution, users will have more control in Android 11.
Vitaldevara writes, When users select (one-time permission) option, apps can only access the data until the user moves away from the app, and they must then request permission again for the next access. So in other words, no background access to any private data to an app.
The developer preview of Android 11 also reveals that Android users will have more control on allowing access to the sensitive information like the location, microphone and camera.
For instance, when a phone asks the user for their location, the device will give three options -- Only This Time, While Using the App and Deny. By selecting Only This Time, the user will give the app just "one-time" permission and the app will access the user's location temporarily.
As we took a closer look at background location usage, we found that many of the apps that requested background location didn't actually need it. In fact, many of these apps could provide the same user experience by only accessing location when the app is visible to the user, Vitaldevara explained.
Once Android 11 is out in public, by November 2 all existing apps that request background location will need to comply with new guidelines or they will be removed from the Google Play store. Android 11 is already out as first developer preview. It is expected that in the coming weeks, Android 11 will be rolling out to more developers as part of the second developer preview. These previews will keep coming out until Google brings out public beta, likely at the Google IO event in summer. The final build -- and the one that will be reaching Android phone users -- will come out later this year, probably around the time when Google launches the Pixel 5.