Google is Prompting Developers to Add Release Notes for New App Version Releases

Google is Prompting Developers to Add Release Notes for New App Version Releases

A very big gripe some people have with the Google Play Store is how app updates are presented. While you can easily know which apps have an update waiting to be installed on your phone, you usually have no means of finding out if the update is really worth installing.

Without quality changelogs, that is.

Many app developers, even a few prominent ones, pay little to no attention to diligently filling out release notes. The changes from one version of the app to the next are often poorly documented. Forget Git-like change tracking, one should consider themselves blessed if the release notes contain anything beyond the good ole “Bug Fixes and Improvements”. But in some cases, even this is disappointingly absent.


Google may have taken a small step towards “fixing” this. Play store listings contain a dedicated area for displaying release notes, and Google is now apparently making it compulsory for developers to fill in this section for every new version release of their app.

As Reddit user Balaji_Ram found out, Google now “suggests” developers to add in release notes. Apparently, the app update listing does not complete if the developer has not added in release notes.

While not a complete solution in and of itself, this will make developers pay a bit more attention to public changelogs. Most developers will likely bypass the intention of this change entirely by falling back to the classic “Bug Fixes and Improvements” anyway, though. And that’s excusable considering most of Google’s own apps also do not set a good example either.

What are your thoughts on this new change? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: Reddit/r/AndroidDev

About author

Aamir Siddiqui
Aamir Siddiqui

A journalist at XDA-Developers and the current Editor in Chief, I have been writing for XDA since 2015, despite being a qualified business-litigation lawyer. A low-end smartphone purchase in 2011 brought me to the forums, and it's been a journey filled with custom ROMs ever since. When not fully dipped in smartphone news and tutorials, I love traveling to places just to capture pictures of the sun setting. You can reach out to me at [email protected] or on Twitter (@aamirsidd94).

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