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HD Widgets and Permissions

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by OakIris, Jan 4, 2013.

  1. OakIris

    OakIris Member
    Thread Starter

    I am looking for a good weather app and have seen recommendations for HD Widgets. It looks quite promising, but I do have a question about the Permissions that HD Widgets requests. (I have read just enough of the stickied "Permissions" thread to be worried, or perhaps overly cautious?? :p )

    Among the Permissions listed are that HD Widgets will have access to my contacts, how many times I have called/emailed, etc., a particular contact, and it also allows it to take pictures or videos without any input from the user. Why would an app that is supposed to give current weather, forecasts, current time, need to have access to these things? What does predicting weather have to do with how many times I have called someone? Does it need to take pictures in order to tell me what the current weather is?!? :thinking:

    Please help to explain this "permission thing" to a newbie - should I not be worried because an app is considered a "legitimate" app as opposed to, for example, warez?


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  2. OakIris

    OakIris Member
    Thread Starter

    There have been no responses to my post so perhaps permissions are not quite the concern that I thought they would/should be??

    There is no reason that I know of for a weather/clock app or widget to have access to my contacts, whether the program is considered legitimate or not, and no one here seems to have an opinion so I will just follow common sense and skip getting HD Widgets. There are plenty of other apps out there that will work that don't ask for seemingly "bizarre" permissions.

  3. sohguanh

    sohguanh Android Enthusiast

    For permissions not related to app functions, it is most likely permission required by ad provider. That is when developer put ads into the app, that ad provided by some vendors require those permissions.
  4. SIII groupie

    SIII groupie Member

    I use a "weather channel" widget. I agree ads are likely a possible reason. I have also read that it is in many cases sloppy ignorant/evil developers that require boilerplate permissions.

    That said and mind you I am not hyper about privacy. The worst weather channel is likely to do to me is annoy me with marketing. I am cautious of who I give permisions to. Ads/annoying malware/dangerous.
  5. Methos1979

    Methos1979 Android Enthusiast

    If you click on the link to the developer's website, most have FAQ's that explain why they need the permissions they do. It's certainly good to be aware and concerned about what permissions are needed, but most of the programs on Google Play are safe. Everyone has a different level of comfort about this. Since you are new I can understand your concern.

    Generally speaking, if a program has been around a long time and has thousands of ratings from users and a high rating then you can rest assured that the program is safe and the permissions they request are needed. For instance, the permission to have access to your camera/video is simply because they need access to your flash for use in the flashlight widget!

    Here is a direct link to the HD Widget's permissions FAQ:

    cloud.tv – Permissions used in HD Widgets

    I use the program and it's great.
    OakIris likes this.
  6. OakIris

    OakIris Member
    Thread Starter

    I hadn't thought about the possible part advertisers play in the developers choice of permissions; that is something to consider. Kind of off-putting to think that some vendors may have access to my contacts merely so that they can pass on the info to an advertiser in order that the advertiser can continue to spam folks! To my knowledge, however, HD Widgets is not paid for by advertiser revenue; at least there is nothing in the description saying ads were involved and the user does pay for the program.

    Thank you very much for the common sense advice about checking ratings, etc., Methos. The stickied "android permissions explained" thread mentions that as well. Although I had considered emailing the dev to ask why the permissions were needed by HD Widgets, I didn't think about checking their website to see if the FAQ's included information about this - a great tip and one that I will certainly follow in the future! Their explanations made sense to me, and I will be downloading the program.


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