Why Co-Star accuses Google of ‘anti-astrology prejudice’?

Co-Star recently accuses Google of its ‘anti-astrology prejudice’ after Google Play Store pulls its horoscope app.

The “hyper-personalized” AI astrology app notorious and beloved for its ego-bruising push notifications, Co-Star has gone supernova on Google over its sudden removal from the Play Store.

Just after two weeks, the app became available to the Android users, it reportedly disappeared from Play Store on Wednesday evening. The app’s official Instagram account posted a furious note on Stories, a few hours later, and re-posted on Twitter in its trademark monochrome, with the header “Don’t Be Evil: Google hates astrology”.

On February 5, 2020 at 8PM EST, the Co-Star app for Android devices was removed from the Google Play store citing a Metadata Policy violation,” the post reads.

” We have worded hard to make a useful language for understanding ourselves and others, despite counter claims that it is a ” pseudo-science.” We are a small company of 12 people. We launched our Android app just two weeks ago. We don’t make money off of ads. We don’t sell your data. All we ever wanted was to bring you the app you’ve been asking for, yes we are forced to justify ourselves and our mission to big exploitative companies like google again and again. This is unacceptable we don’t tolerate anti-astrology prejudice”.

 

At Google Play Store, right now,  at least 250 astrology-related apps based in various traditions are present. The company’s claims of anti-astrology prejudice aren’t backed up with more concrete information. The metadata issues in question, as one Twitter user suggested may be as simple as the policy’s length.

Xiaomi, Huawei and BBK’s Oppo and Vivo are working together on a platform that will allow the developers outside of China to upload their apps to all of the respective app stores at a time, Reuters reports. The Chinese manufacturers have joined together under the Global Developer Service Alliance (GDSA) in what appears to be an attempt to challenge international dominance of Google’s Play Store.

Since the ban of Google Play Store in China, the Android users have grown accustomed to download the apps from a range of different app stores, as many of which are maintained by the manufacturers like Huawei and Oppo. But the rule of Google Play Store is more dominant outside of China, as it is providing a convenient single location, where the developers can upload their software. This also means that third party app stores have struggled with developer support internationally, and it’s this advantage that could be challenged by GDSA’s platform.

Google earned a significant revenue from Play Store which takes a 30% cut of any sales made through the store. In all it’s thought to have made the company around $8.8 billion worldwide in last year, according to one analyst quoted by Reuters. But China’s phone makers want a slice of that pie, as handset sales slow globally.

It was reported by Reuters that a March launch was planned for the new platform, but coronavirus outbreak may have delayed it.