Connected apps is an Android feature that allows your application to utilize both work and personal data, when given the corresponding permission from the user.
Early Access Program
The Early Access Program for Connected work & personal apps enables developers
to apply for approval to use the
INTERACT_ACROSS_PROFILES permission in an app
published in Google Play.
The Android Enterprise engineering team is seeking feedback on the Connected apps SDK from app developers. Understanding developers' use cases and requirements will allow us to learn more about how app developers are planning to leverage this permission to improve the work profile experience for Android users. Just as importantly, the Early Access Program will allow us to gather third party feedback on the feasibility of the potential policy integration requirements. This will ultimately help us define the most appropriate set of policies to manage use of this permission in apps distributed in Google Play.
To help protect Play users, apps requesting to use the
INTERACT_ACROSS_PROFILES permission must be approved by the Android Enterprise
team prior to being published on Google Play. Developers who want to use this
permission must first submit their use case to Google for review. Not all use
cases will be considered for review. We will evaluate all apps and use cases
against the same criteria, considering how an app may benefit end users and the
necessity of using the permission for that use case, including the following
- Does this feature, enabled by the app’s use of the permission, deliver clear value to the user?
- Would users expect their work & personal app to interact in this way?
- Is the feature enabled by the app’s use of the permission important to the primary purpose of the app?
- Can the app deliver the same or similar experience without use of the permission?
Developers need to fulfill the following criteria for applying to the EAP:
- The application they wish to submit for review should be an existing application with demonstrated popularity (minimum 200,000 downloads in Google Play). We do not intend to accept EAP submissions for brand new applications.
- Applications that will be considered for allowlisting to use the
INTERACT_ACROSS_PROFILESpermission should fall under one of the following Play store app categories:
- Auto & Vehicles
- Developers must agree to comply with the integration requirements as outlined in the following section.
To be part of the Early Access Program, applications must also comply with the following requirements:
INTERACT_ACROSS_PROFILESpermission may only be used to provide features beneficial to the user and relevant to the core functionality of apps intended for work (or include work features). Core functionality is defined as the main purpose of the app. This may include a set of core features, which must all be prominently documented and promoted in the app’s description.
- Apps must get user consent, including by displaying appropriate screens
provided by the AOSP implementation before the
INTERACT_ACROSS_PROFILESpermission is granted.
- Apps must not use this permission to associate user identities between the work and personal apps on or off the device.
- Apps must not use this permission to scrape any data accessible to the personal app to build identity graphs.
- Apps must not actively send data on the personal app to the IT admin or other admin-managed apps, or allow the IT admin to access data on the personal profile indirectly.
- Apps must not use this permission to access the personal profile to obtain a list of personal applications or accounts.
- Apps must not send cross-profile data to another application.
- Apps must not log in one profile any data stored or generated in the other profile (e.g.: app data, device settings), including Personal Identifiable Information (PII, e.g.: email address, username).
- Apps must not transmit any data stored or generated in one profile (e.g.: app data, device settings), including Personal Identifiable Information (PII, e.g.: email address, username) off the device from the other profile.
Let’s take a look at a few example use cases
A calendar app that allows the user to have a single view of their personal and work calendar may be an appropriate use case to request this permission.
An app providing backup services that will sync work data to a personal profile account, or vice versa, would not be approved as it would send and log data from one profile to the other profile.
A photo gallery app wanting to use this feature, in order to access work profile contact information to be able to share photos, would not be approved.This functionality could be achieved just as effectively using Sharesheet.
- Review the Early Access Program (EAP) criteria and the integration requirements above to ensure your application qualifies.
- Download and fill out the connected apps questionnaire to outline your use case.
- Review and accept the EAP terms via this form and submit a complete copy of the connected apps questionnaire to email@example.com for our team to review.
- If your use case is approved, develop and test your feature / app.
- When your app is ready, submit the apk to our team for review. Our team will review the application’s use of the permission against that outlined in the approved use case.
- If approved by our team, you will be able to publish the same apk on Google Play via the Google Play console
Whenever you introduce changes to an app that has already been approved, review that the application is still using the permission as outlined in the approved use case. If you are changing the way that your feature / app works, please re-submit your use case to Google for evaluation in accordance with steps 2 and 3 above.
Failure to make the necessary changes to address the compliance issues within
the provided timeline will result in your application's approval being
rescinded. You will be unable to update your application on Google Play until
the issue is addressed and you are re-approved by the Android Enterprise team,
or you remove the feature and its use of the
permission from your app.