Android users will soon be getting a little less bloatware on their phones. Android Central reports that Google has relaxed its requirements about which apps have to be permanently installed, which means apps like Google+, Google Play Games, Google Play Books, and Google Newsstand will no longer come pre-installed. The new Samsung Galaxy Note 5, for example, already doesn't have Google+ pre-installed.
Even though Android is largely open source, Google has saddled its handset partners with app requirements — and there's no wiggle room. If, for instance, HTC wants to make an Android handset with the Gmail app, it historically would also be required to give customers Google+ and Newsstand.
Not only does bloatware take up valuable storage space and memory, it takes away choice on the part of the consumer. And while there will now be less bloatware from Google, there are still other carriers and manufacturers with apps that they would love to have pre-installed on the phones. And no, this isn’t the death of Google+ or Newsstand. The apps will still be regularly updated and available to download in the Google Play Store for those who want them.