Android officially launched on Sept. 8, surprisingly for more than just the Pixel smartphones. As with any update, the new software introduces several improvements that should streamline the user experience on supported devices. These include a central control hub for smart devices, one-time permissions, media controls, and chat bubbles just to name a few. As early as now, Android 12 is likely in the early stages of development and it appears there are changes intended for third-party app stores.

Unlike iOS, the Android operating system allows users to download apps from third-party outlets. Google seems to be focusing on streamlining certain processes according to feedback from developers. The Verge notes that there are plans to "make it even easier for people to use other app stores on their devices while being careful not to compromise the safety measures Android has in place." These are just preliminary outlines that are subject to change later on.

Meanwhile, when it comes to Google Play transactions, the company is reportedly updating the payment policy. It would reflect that "all developers selling digital goods in their apps are required to use Google Play's billing system." In fact, they have issued a deadline requiring the use of its platform by Sept. 30, 2021. The changes likely stemmed from the controversial debacle related to the "Fortnite" app wherein Epic Games encouraged its users to purchase directly from them instead.

Google issued a warning, which the publisher ignored and this eventually led to the game being removed from the Play Store as it violated guidelines. People can still download the app directly from Epic Games' website or via the Samsung Galaxy Store, but will not likely be reinstated until it follows the rules.

Google introduces the Pixel 4a and more
Google has unveiled a new back-to-basics version of its popular Pixel smartphone -- at a more affordable price AFP / Lionel BONAVENTURE

This serves as an ideal example of the flexibility offered by Google which still allows developers to distribute their software despite certain disagreements. More details about Android 12 will be announced in the future, but as indicated above, the payment system will still be strictly implemented for apps distributed through the Play Store. In related news, Apple also revoked Epic Games' access to developer tools after it refused to follow App Store policies regarding transactions.