Google is allowing developers to block rooted users. It looks like that Google has added a new feature for app developers for Google Play Store. The new feature will allow Android app developers to choose to make the app compatible or incompatible with un-certified users and rooted users.
Recently, an update was released by Netflix for their Android users on Play Store which prevented users with an unlocked bootloader or rooted devices from updating to the latest version from Play Store.
It should be noted that the Netflix app still works on rooted but the app shows as “incompatible” on Google Play Store. The changelog for the latest version of the app states that “version 5.0 only works with devices that are certified by Google and meet all Android requirements.”
Some users thought that Google was preventing users due to changes in DRMs. But after I/O 2017, Google stated that they will allow app developers to block rooted users.
Google has provided a new option in developer’s console named as ‘Safety Net Exclusion’ which is given in the Device Catalog Section. The option allows app developers to prevent such devices which are not certified by Google from downloading selected apps.
Which indirectly means that app developers can block devices with root access, devices with Custom ROMs and devices which are being sold in China.
There are many Xiaomi devices which are available for sale only in China; users from other countries import the devices from China and sideload Google Services and Google Apps. These devices can be also prevented from downloading certain apps by app developers.