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Exploring Android’s Future of App Quarantining

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Google is exploring new avenues to enhance security on Android devices, potentially introducing a feature to quarantine suspicious apps in upcoming versions like Android 15. This initiative aims to bolster defenses against malware and spyware that can evade detection by current security measures like Play Protect.

The concept of app quarantining surfaced during testing of the Android 14 QPR2 Beta 1, as reported by Mishaal Rahman from Android Authority. While the feature appeared in the beta, Google has since removed the developer page related to “Quarantined Apps,” indicating ongoing development and potential refinement for future releases beyond Android 15.

Despite the absence of concrete details, Rahman provides insights into how the feature might function based on his testing. Quarantining an app would involve suspending certain functionalities while still allowing its visibility on the device. This includes hiding windows, notifications, and stopping processes to prevent malicious activities. The app would be restricted from certain interactions, such as receiving broadcasts or generating dialog boxes.

Rahman highlights that the APIs used for app quarantine are similar to those for app suspension, with additional parameters for quarantine. Access to the quarantine feature would likely be limited to authorized apps and services like Google’s Play Protect, ensuring that only trusted entities can quarantine potentially harmful apps.

Although Rahman’s testing sheds light on the functionality of the quarantine feature, its official implementation remains uncertain. Nevertheless, given the persistent threat of malicious apps, such a feature could significantly enhance user security on the Android platform.

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