Android permissions will be made clearer, says Google

Android - permissions causing confusion
Android - permissions causing confusion

Google's executive chairman Eric Schmidt has stated that the company is working hard to simplify the often bemusing Android permissions screen when installing apps.

Currently, users are given a list of what services and data an app has access to, which often overstates exactly what it will do with that data.

Schmidt – talking at Google's Big Tent event in London – explained that the legal necessities should not degrade the user experience, and said the company is working on a solution.

Written by lawyers

"These things [permissions] are written by lawyers and they are completely accurate over five paragraphs instead of saying "we're going to do this with your data".

"We're working on a series of projects looking to simplify and we intend to do it."

Schmidt also expressed his surprise that the work being done on translation for the mobile phone was not getting more plaudits, describing the increasingly effective technology as 'earth shattering'.

Cloud translation

"We forget how far we have come," he said. "To me the most interesting thing in the last year was the fact that we can speak into our phones and out of the other end comes a language that I don't even speak.

"So I speak in English, that goes through a decoder into text, that text is translated into text in a foreign language and then a speech generator speaks it out at the other end, all using cloud computing.

"That's earth shattering to me."

Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.