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WeChat wants to update outside of Google Play

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by OM2, Oct 20, 2021.

  1. OM2

    OM2 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I get an annoying message saying WeChat wants to update.
    No problem. I always update my apps and keep upto date.
    BUT... WeChat wants to install from outside of Google.
    I get a warning message saying do I want to install from outside.

    No way! I don't want to install!
    I might as well install a million other SDK's.

    Is this not against Google terms??
    I'm sure it would be against Apple terms (just guessing).

    Anyone else got the same?

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  2. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    Yeh, that's how WeChat does updates for me. It is OK for this app, but it can be updated from Google Play as well. You can decline WeChat's own update, and just update it from the Play Store yourself. Bare in mind, WeChat can force you to use their latest client version, otherwise it may not connect with older versions.

    Reasons it's like this; WeChat comes from Tencent in China, and Google quit China about ten years ago, and is blocked here unless you have a VPN. Android devices here don't usually have the Google Play Store, and so apps from Chinese devs are sometimes built to handle their own updates.

    On the other hand Apple is NOT blocked in China and has a full presence here, and so WeChat updates for the iPhone can always be done via the iOS App Store. And AFAIK it's not against Google Play terms for apps to service their own updates.

    BTW I don't generally recommend WeChat for international users these days, unless you're actually in China(like me, where it's pretty much mandatory for so many things now), or you wish to communicate with friends in China. I communicate with my family and friends in the UK and Ireland via WhatsApp.
    #2 mikedt, Oct 20, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2021
    puppykickr, James_Watson and ocnbrze like this.
  3. OM2

    OM2 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    No. I have had WeChat for many years now.
    It's always updated fine.
    This message is new.
    I would never knowingly give permission for an app to install from outside.
    As I said: I might as well install loads of other external SDK's.
    Staying inside of Google Play is really important.

  4. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    But WeChat has always had the capability download and apply its own updates, outside of Google Play, because that's how it's done here in China, and the same for any devices outside of China that don't have the Google Play store on them, e.g. Huawei. And I've never seen any warning messages. Are you using any third-party "security" or "anti-virus" apps, which might be showing that message?

    Another thing, WeChat for Windows and macOS on computers can and do self update, like with Android. WeChat for iPhone can only update from inside the App Store, because of the iOS walled garden.

    FYI the current version of WeChat I've got is 8.0.15 and is running on a Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G, with latest Samsung updates. This phone does also have Google Play, which I installed myself, but requires a VPN because of where I am.

    As for "external SDK's", whatever those are? WeChat applies exactly the same updates that are distributed via Google Play, and only come from Tencent, WeChat's developers. And don't believe what comes via Google Play is completely benign and safe, many nasties have been distributed as updates via the Play Store over the years.

    I've been using WeChat pretty much from the start, ever since it was just called 微信(WeiXin), and was in Chinese only.
    #4 mikedt, Oct 20, 2021
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2021
    James_Watson likes this.
  5. James_Watson

    James_Watson Android Enthusiast

    You are an old China hand. In addition, you are also very proficient in IT technology.:thumbsupdroid:
    mikedt likes this.
  6. puppykickr

    puppykickr Android Expert

    Staying inside of Google Play is really important.[/QUOTE]

    Because Google tells you to do so?

    A bird living inside a cage thinks that the ones that live outdoors are living risky lives.
    James_Watson and mikedt like this.
  7. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    I wake up this morning, and I find an updated WeChat has been installed on my MacBook, and this is outside of the Apple App Store.

    Screen Shot 2021-10-22 at 23.59.25.png

    If you use Chinese apps and agree with their ToS and EULAs, you have no grounds for complaint.

    ...and if you don't agree, stop using it .
    puppykickr likes this.


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