Ron does a fantastic job of digging things out of Google APK updates and finding what is being added but not yet active. His latest discovery could go both ways. It seems like it could be great for those that are deep into Google services, but for general users it could push them further away. Ron discovered a string file that lists a whole bunch of stuff related to Google+ and app reviews. The sting talks about written app reviews being displayed in the Play Store with your Google+ name and Profile picture. Take a quick read -
<string name=”reviews_google_plus_required”>”From now on, reviews you write will be posted publicly using your Google+ name and picture. Your name on previous reviews will appear as “A Google User.””</string>
<string name=”reviews_google_plus_required_backup”>”Google Play is now connected with Google+ to help you find reviews you trust. New reviews will be posted publicly using your Google+ name and picture. Your name on previous reviews will appear as “A Google User.””</string>
<string name=”reviews_join_google_plus”>Join now</string>
<string name=”reviews_join_google_plus_backup”>Join Google+</string>
What we aren’t fully liking is the “reviews_google_plus_required_backup” section. It would appear that once Google implements this new ability, all written reviews will have to be linked to your Google+ account. If you don’t have one, then you will be asked to join and get one going.
This can be a good thing for many reasons. First being it should help eliminate the less than helpful and appropriate comments and reviews. Like “This app sucks.” “Don’t waste your time, this dev is stupid and so is the app.” Along with many more that we all see floating about. If reviews and comments about an app link to someones G+ page, then it should stop a lot of the nonsense comments out of fear of knowing who they are and getting into battles publicly.
On the other side of the coin, this will prompt more people to get a Google+ account that may not want or need one. Why they wouldn’t is not up to us to decide, but if Google forces G+ on people to leave comments and reviews on apps, I fear it will turn many people away from providing constructive and helpful reviews. Being forced to use Google+ certainly isn’t going to win everybody over.
What is your take on all of this? Will the good out weigh the bad? Check out some of the other little secrets that Ron pulled out of the APK. There are a couple of others that are pretty cool.