AndroidAppsGood and EVO

Hidden Android 4.3 feature: Individual app permission control is now available

App OpsWhile custom ROMs and root-only mods have long offered Android users the ability to control individual app permissions, this hasn’t been available in stock Android … until now. Hidden deep within the settings, App Ops lets you selectively disable permissions for your apps with absolutely no root required.

To access this setting, you’ll need to do some digging. Here are the two best options:

  1. Using an app that can launch activities (like Nova Launcher or QuickShortcutMaker), pick “Settings,” and then “App ops.” Some apps will allow you to simply search for the “App ops” activity, and launch it directly from the search results or create a shortcut on your homescreen.
  2. If this is too much work, a developer has already published an app to Google Play that will launch this automatically for you. It’s called Permission Manager.

It’s important to remember that Google doesn’t think this feature is ready for prime time quite yet, which is why it’s hidden and such a pain to get to. However, in my own testing on my LG Nexus 4, I haven’t run into any problems. In fact, I really like what Google is doing here.

When you open it up for the first time, you’ll notice that your apps are sorted by “location,” “personal,” “messaging,” and “device,” so it’s easy to see what app uses the permissions you’re concerned about. There’s also a timestamp that displays when the app last used a permission. Selecting an app brings you to a screen with easy on/off toggles for each app.

This will be great for controlling apps that might try draining your battery by constantly polling for your location, or even for apps that just require too many permissions in your opinion. Just remember what you change here, though, since it’s now even easier to break some apps if you don’t know what you’re doing.

[Android PoliceThanks, Bill!

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John F

John was the editor-in-chief at Pocketables. His articles generally focus on all things Google, including Chrome and Android, although his love of new gadgets and technology doesn't stop there. His current arsenal includes the Nexus 6 by Motorola, the 2013 Nexus 7 by ASUS, the Nexus 9 by HTC, the LG G Watch, and the Chromebook Pixel, among others.

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3 thoughts on “Hidden Android 4.3 feature: Individual app permission control is now available

  • Avatar of steve gaudreau

    It would be nice if HTC got off their asses and update the EVO

  • Yep, I got tired of waiting and waiting and waiting for updates to my EVO, and I got tired of waiting on Sprint’s awesome network, so I got a Samsung S4, switched to Verizon and now life is awesome and actually cheaper!!! WOOhooo!!

  • Avatar of lefteri

    Sprint uses unscrupulous and dishonest practices to increase customer base. I lost my phone last September and went to the store prepared to buy a used smart phone for 200 to carry out the remainder of the contract. I was talked into a new phone and a new contract. When i asked the sales person how much my first bill and consequent bills would be on the new contract, the answer was about 120 for the first bill and consequent bills. I received the first bill and it was a little over $350 and the subsequent bills were 120. She put the old line on hold for about 10 a month. She never mentioned that six months down the line i would still have to pay $240 early termination fee. I called today customer service and try to at least get the ETF on the first line removed.and of course and They apologized and sympathize profuselly but they are not removing the ETF. I am gonna try weather i succeed or not i don’t. Once this contract ends, i will never sign another contract with any phone companies.


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