UC Browser has disappeared from the Google Play store. The Alibaba-owned mobile browser, which garnered more than 500 million downloads last month and has over 100 million users in India, is no longer visible on Google Play Store.Though other UCWeb applications – UC Browser Mini and UC News – still available. the Chinese app had been accused of sending personal data of its Indian users to a server in China, and it’s unclear for now what the reason for the removal is.
UC Browser’s sudden removal from the Play Store could be temporary. A Twitter user claiming to work on the browser reportedly received an email confirming that the app was “removed from play store for 30 days because it used “Misleading” and “Unhealthy” methods of promotion to increase installs.”
Android Police founder Artem Russakovskii posted the text of an email that he received from UC Union (UCWeb’s affiliate network) that suggests some conflict between Google and UCWeb.
Twitter user Mike Ross, who claims to work for UC Browser, tweeted that the browser is “temporarily removed” from the Play Store for 30 days due to adopting “misleading” and “unhealthy” methods of increasing installs. We’ve reached out to Google and UCWeb for clarity and will update this space accordingly.
While Chrome has since reinstated some of its dominance, back in June, UC Browser became India’s favourite mobile browser and at one point grasped over 50 percent market share. In addition, it is the sixth most downloaded Android app in India.
For those unfamiliar with the name, UC Browser is developed by UCWeb, which is owned by China’s Alibaba Group. As well as being a hugely popular alternative to Google Chrome in its home region, UC Browser has an enormous base in India.
Reports began trending in August that claimed UC Browser has a rather nasty habit of stealing sensitive user data which it then sends back to remote servers in China without the user’s consent.
Both Google and UC Web have yet to comment on the situation.
According to Gadgets 360, Uc Browser will be available after 7 days, beginning 13 Nov 2017.