# Google Play Store

Tales from the abyss.
Saturday, October 8, 2022

The Indian scam continues

I know you should not answer junk mail, but hey, I was bored…

Friday, July 29, 2022

Needs Browser Login - Workaround

Step by step instructions for logging in accounts that have been restricted to browser login.

Friday, July 15, 2022

Privacy friendly apps

Just came across an interesting project by the University of Karlsruhe SECUSO Research Group.

Saturday, February 12, 2022

So, Google Analytics is now illegal to use in France and Austria, with other European countries likely to follow suit. Not sure, a lot of people understand the gravity of what that means. Analytics is at the core of Google’s business. It not only powers personalized ads, but also things like search and Youtube suggestions. This is going to ripple back and forth: less websites using Analytics means less profiling, leading to less relevant video suggestions, fewer videos watched, fewer ads seen (and clicked!) and less money earned.

That’s Google’s (as well as Youtube influencer’s) problem though. The more interesting problem is that Analytics is not only used for tracking on websites, but within Android Apps as well (and it is much more pervasive there). The Playstore doesn’t allow for distributing different APKs based on country, but it does allow for restricting apps on a per country level.

The EU cannot tell Google to shut down the Analytics backend (that’s US turf), but it can tell the company to restrict access to apps, integrating Analytics, in its territory.

Friday, July 16, 2021

"Bad Authentication" error- what you can do

I need a little bit of help on this one.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

"Bad Authentication" error during login (blocked Google account)

I have recently been getting a few support requests about a "Bad Authentication" Error when logging in with Raccoon.

Saturday, April 24, 2021
Friday, January 22, 2021

Manually installing split APK files (App Bundles) via ADB

Can't really recommend doing it this way, but sometimes you have no other choice.

Friday, November 6, 2020

A reader asks:

Can Google delete apps from my Android smartphone?

Eh, yes, of course! There’s a push message and a mechanism for that implemented in the Playstore app. In case you find that surprising: how did you think Play would handle a cancelled payment for paid content? Return the money and let you keep the item?

In case the question was if you could buy an app, use Raccoon to download the APK to your PC, then refund, the answer is: yes you can do that (shame on you), most paid apps safeguard against this by performing an online license check.

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Hrmpf! I started working on bringing app reviews to Raccoon. I’d rather not implement this. The more you dig into the API, the more you realize that this is nothing but a dark pattern to keep users engaged. It helps no one, but harms everyone.

  • You can’t really write a meaningful review of a product on a mobile device. Anything that’s longer than 2-3 sentences takes a lot of effort.
  • In case you feel so strongly about the app that spent the effort, you are probably thwarted by the character limit.
  • Even if you manage to write an actually useful review, no one will read it, as it gets pushed down by newer reviews and eventually drowns in drivel.
  • The only thing that may have a lasting effect is your star rating, but even that is utterly useless as it only contributes to an average based on vastly different rating criteria.
  • App developers are given every incentive to game the system by boosting their rankings with fake reviews.

So yes, you won’t make a difference by reviewing an app and you don’t gain any insight from reading reviews either.