GApps Can No Longer Be Used On 'Uncertified' Devices, Custom ROM Users Safe



Nearly 82% of devices which run an operating system are Android. At Google I/O 2017, CEO Sundar Pichai announced that Android powers over two billion monthly active devices. Pichai also noted that seven of Google's services - Chrome, Gmail, Google Play, Maps, Search, YouTube - have over a billion users. It's not hard to make out that Google services are closely knitted with Android; in fact Android has been one of the major propagators of Google's services. As a result, every device that ships with Android is pre-loaded with Google's suite of apps, commonly referred to as GApps.

For an OEM to ship GApps on their device, they need to pass the Compatibility Test Suite (CTS), for clearing which they must meet all the requirements listed in the Compatibility Definition Document (CDD). Once a device passes the CTS, it is 'certified' by Google to include GApps. Up until now it was possible for 'uncertified' devices (devices which aren't clear of CTS) to run Google's apps. Some manufacturers misused this and bundled Google's apps in their devices without obtaining certification from Google. Google has now initiated a crackdown wherein it's blocking 'uncertified' devices from accessing it's suite of apps.

Uncertified devices running a firmware later than March 16, 2018 won't be allowed to sign into Google


The crackdown is only being leveraged upon firmwares which were compiled after March 16, 2018. Google Play Services will check ro.build.fingerprint from the build.prop to obtain the compilation date of the firmware. If the device is 'uncertified' and the build date is newer than March 16, 2018, then the user will not be allowed to sign into their Google account. If the user is already signed in, they will automatically be logged out of their account. No action will be taken against the user's account.


To find out whether your device is certified, you can open Play Store, tap on the hamburger icon, scroll down to settings, and see under Device Certification whether your device is 'Certified' or 'Uncertified'. As mentioned before, this crackdown will come into effect only if your device isn't certified and receives an OTA update later than March 16. Hence if you have an old device which hasn't been updated in a while, this crackdown won't have any impact on you.



There is a part of the Android community who modify their device via custom ROMs. While using custom ROMs, several devices end up showing as 'Uncertified' in Play Store's device certification. These devices are certified by Google for their out-of-the-box firmware, but for some reason, they may fail Google's certification check in custom ROMs. The owners of such devices need not worry since they can "register" their device with Google. Once registered, these devices will be clear of the crackdown. Google is allowing up to hundred devices to be registered with each account. Custom ROM users can visit the "device registration" page and enter the ID of their device to register it. You can obtain the ID of your device by executing the ADB command "settings get secure android_id".

If you have installed Play Store on an Amazon Fire tablet, it will stop working once there is update dated later than March 16.

Source: XDA Developers

Krittin Kalra
Krittin Kalra is a 20 year old Android freak. Striving for passions, chasing down his dreams and living a life without regrets is his sole mantra. A bit moody, he also does custom ROM reviews for AndroGuider. Currently pursuing his B.Tech, he aspires to follow his heart.
GApps Can No Longer Be Used On 'Uncertified' Devices, Custom ROM Users Safe GApps Can No Longer Be Used On 'Uncertified' Devices, Custom ROM Users Safe Reviewed by Krittin Kalra on 3/26/2018 02:26:00 am
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