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You can now download Google Play Protect as a standalone app

Google Play Protect
Google Play Protect (Image credit: Alex Dobie / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Google Play Protect is now available to download as a separate app.
  • Google Play Protect automatically scans all apps installed on your phone and prevents the installation of harmful apps.
  • Google claims Play Protect is the most widely deployed mobile threat protection service in the world.

At I/O 2017, Google announced Play Protect, a suite of services aimed at securing all Android devices with access to the Play Store. After being a part of Play Services for over four years, Google has now quietly made it available as a standalone app on the Play Store (via XDA Developers.

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For some reason, the Play Protect app listing hasn't gone live on the Play Store website just yet. However, you will be able to access it if you open the app listing (opens in new tab) on an Android phone or tablet.

It is also worth noting that the app currently shows a "Your device isn't compatible with this version" message on many devices right now, including the best Samsung phones. The only devices that are compatible with the app currently are those running Android 12 beta. That said, it will probably not take very long for this to change.

As can be seen in the screenshot above, the app has already been installed on over 100,000 Android devices. As you'd expect the app will only work on devices that have Play Services installed. If you have a Huawei or Honor phone without Google Mobile Services (GMS), you won't be able to use Play Protect.

Unsurprisingly, the standalone Play Protect app doesn't work any differently. Powered by Google's machine learning, the Play Protect service scans all apps installed on your Android phone and can prevent the installation of rogue or harmful apps.

Now that Play Protect is available as a standalone app, it will allow Google to push updates quicker than before. Until now, any updates to Play Protect were only pushed as part of Play Services updates.

Babu Mohan
Babu Mohan