Google has added a rule banning apps that “facilitate” the sale of marijuana — whether they’re operating legally or not — but the company says it’s not trying to drive pot-related services off the Google Play Store. Android Police noted the change earlier today, speculating that it might spell trouble for the popular weed-finding apps Eaze and Weedmaps. Google tells The Verge that it’s working with developers to make their apps compliant with the new rules, rather than trying to ban them from the Play Store altogether.
Android apps can apparently still promote pot, but they’re not allowed to offer an “in-app shopping cart feature” to assist with “arranging delivery or pick up of marijuana” or to otherwise “facilitate the sale of marijuana or marijuana products, regardless of legality.”
In a statement to The Verge, Google described the changes as less sweeping than that language suggests. “These apps simply need to move the shopping cart flow outside of the app itself to be compliant with this new policy,” said a spokesperson. “We’ve been in contact with many of the developers and are working with them to answer any technical questions and help them implement the changes without customer disruption.” [Read more at The Verge]