Target API level requirements for Google Play apps

Starting from 1 November 2022, if your app doesn’t target API level 30 or above, new users with newer Android OS versions won't be able to discover or install your app on Google Play. You can request an extension if you need more time to update your app. Check your Play Console inbox messages for links to each of your app’s extension forms.

Every new Android version introduces changes that enhance the user experience, security and performance of the Android platform overall. Each app specifies a targetSdkVersion (also known as the target API level) in the manifest file. The target API level indicates how your app is meant to run on different Android versions.

Configuring your app to target a recent API level ensures that users benefit from security, privacy and performance improvements, while still allowing an app to run on older Android versions (down to the specified minSdkVersion).

To provide Android and Google Play users with a safe experience, Google Play requires all apps to meet target API level requirements listed below.

Definitions

New app An app that is not yet published on Google Play (i.e. a brand new app).
Existing app An app that is published on Google Play.
App update A new version of the app that you’re submitting for review to replace your existing app.
 

App update requirements

Android OS version (API level)

When are app submissions required to target this API level?
New app App update*

Android 13 (API level 33)

1 August 2023

1 November 2023

Android 12 (API level 31)

1 August 2022

1 November 2022

*To help ease the transition for developers, we give developers more time to update their existing apps.

Tip: For technical guidance on how to change your app’s target API level to meet these requirements, refer to the migration guide.

Wear OS app requirements

Android OS version

When are Wear OS apps required to target this API level?
New app App updates*

Android 11 (API level 30)

1 August 2022

1 November 2022

*To help ease the transition for developers, we give developers more time to update their existing apps. 

App discoverability requirements

Existing apps must target API level 30 or above by 1 Nov 2022. Otherwise, they will stop being discoverable to all Google Play users whose devices run Android OS versions newer than your app’s target API level. This is because your app wasn’t built to meet the safety and quality standards that Play users expect from newer Android OS versions. 

If you need more time to update your app to target API level 31 or above, you can submit an extension request for your app to continue being discoverable to all Google Play users until 1 May 2023. Check your Play Console inbox messages for links to each of your app’s extension forms.

Note: Wear OS apps are exempted from these discoverability requirements.

What to do to comply 

New apps

When you publish a new app, you must target API 31 or above.

Existing apps

If your existing app’s target API level is 30 or above, then your app is compliant with this policy. 

If your existing app’s target is below API 30, it will stop being discoverable to all Google Play users whose devices run Android OS versions newer than your app's target API levels. This is because your app wasn’t built to meet the safety and quality standards that Play users expect from newer Android OS versions. 

  • If you plan to update this app to target API level 31 or above, you can submit an extension request to continue getting distributed to all users on Google Play until 1 May 2023. Impacted apps will receive an extension request form link in their Play Console inbox message.

When you update your app, you must target API 31 or above.

Frequently asked questions

For apps targeting API 29 or below

I have a live app on Google Play Store that targets API 29 or lower, which I do not plan to update. What are my options?

If you want to continue to serve this app to existing users, you do not need to do anything. However, your app will receive reduced distribution starting 1 November because it targets an older API level. It will be available only for devices running API level 29 or older. 

If you want to continue being discoverable by all users on Google Play, then you will need to update your app to a newer target API. You can update your app at any time. If you plan to update your app to a newer target API and need more time, you may request an extension to continue distributing to all Google Play users until 1 May 2023. By 1 May 2023, your app must meet this target API level requirement, otherwise, it will stop being discoverable to all Google Play users whose devices run Android OS versions newer than your app’s target API level.

If you want to stop serving your app to new users even on older devices, you can unpublish your app.

Where can I find the extension form to continue distributing to all Google Play users until 1 May 2023

Only apps that are not compliant with the policy will receive an extension form via Play Console inbox message. The message is titled 'Target API level policy changes will impact the availability of your app on Google Play, starting 1 Nov 2022'.

I have apps that I no longer want to be published on Google Play. What can I do? 

Please refer to this Help Centre article for instructions on how to unpublish your app. 

How will my users who have already downloaded my app previously be impacted? 

Users who have previously installed the app from Google Play will not be impacted and will still be able to discover, re-install and use the app on any Android OS version that your app supports.

Will this update impact app downloads?  

It may impact your app download levels if new users on devices with newer Android OS versions cannot discover or download your app from Google Play.

What will the user experience be if a user on a newer device visits a deep link to the app store page, but the app is targeting API 29 or lower?

Google Play will inform the user that this app is not available to install on their device. 
Was this helpful?
How can we improve it?

Need more help?

Sign in for additional support options to quickly solve your issue

Search
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu
Search Help Centre
false
false
true
true
92637
false
false