4

The Google Play webpage for the Stack Exchange Android app shows that it requires permission to modify or delete USB storage content.

a screenshot of the Google Play webpage for Stack Exchange showing the modify SD card permission highlighted

Translation:

Modifying and deleting contents of USB storage

Could this permission be removed? Since you get access to your own subfolder under Android/ for free, it seems rather unreasonable.

If not, please give good explanation why (including, why couldn't a specific feature be implemented without using that permission).

9
  • 4
    See meta.stackexchange.com/questions/217345/…
    – frozenkoi
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 6:52
  • Caching. 15 chars Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 6:53
  • 1
    Don’t you get access to your own subfolder under Android/ for free?
    – kinokijuf
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 6:57
  • 2
    If I understand the Android developer documentation correctly, this permissions is not needed to access your own folder in 4.4, not needed at all before 4.1, but it is needed in 4.1-4.3 if the user checks the "protect USB storage" option. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 7:02
  • 6
    After a closer look at the permission I actually think you have somewhat of a point, the permission seems to be not needed if you ignore users that check a specific developer option. But you're making your point in a really bad and not-constructive way. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 7:10
  • 1
    Dude I don't do eastern European... translate the screenshot into the language of the platform in which you are requesting assistance. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 8:54
  • 3
    @mattdlockyer Sorry, i can’t. Google does not respect the Accept-Language browseer header and instead guesses the language based on IP.
    – kinokijuf
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 16:47
  • @kinokijuf wow that's a major block. Sorry. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 18:57
  • @mattdlockyer I once had an IP that Google thought was in Germany. I don’t speak a word of German.
    – kinokijuf
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 19:43

2 Answers 2

14

As I stated in the permissions FAQ thread, this is so we can write a cache to your SD card.

As stated in the comments, you do get that for free, but only starting in API level 19 meaning if we didn't have this permission and tried to write anything to a cache on anything below KitKat the application would crash.

5

Could this permission be removed?

Possibly, but they've chosen to use it for a reason apparently. According to What are the permissions the Android app needs? it's kind of important.

Modify or delete file contents of your USB storage

We use this to cache data onto your phone's external storage (normally an SD card) per Google's standards

They're not going to wipe your SD card.

5
  • 4
    Don’t you get access to your own subfolder under Android/ for free?
    – kinokijuf
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 7:03
  • 1
    I'm not an Android developer, so I can't tell you. I just quoted the reason why they chose to have this permission. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 7:03
  • hmmm it seems you answers why without actually knowing why... Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 10:24
  • 2
    It shouldn't seem that way, because I just now explicitly said it was that way. :P Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 10:32
  • 2
    @ŁukaszL. if we had to know why without guessing or quoting other sources, no one on MSO would answer except for SE employees. I think this answers the question as asked. Of course, it doesn't answer the follow up comment though. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 12:46

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .