What’s new on managing app permissions in Android Marshmallow?
One of the top features in Android Marshmallow is the new app permissions control system.
With Android marshmallow, you now have the full control of app permissions on your Android devices. You can manage app permissions for individual apps, or for any specific permissions.
For example, in all Android prior to Marshmallow 6.0, when an app request 10 permissions, your only option is to grant all of them and install it if you need the app.
In Android Marshmallow, you will be asked to grant permissions only when the app need access that feature. You will not be asked to accept permissions when installing the app.
Of course, this is for apps that are optimized for Android Marshmallow (with API version 23 or later).
For old apps that have not been updated for long time, you will still have to grant all permissions when install them. But later, you can remove any of the permissions.
Compared to Android Lollipop and other previous Android versions, you now can manage app permissions in new ways:
- Grant and deny any specific permissions for any specific apps. You are not required to grant all permissions to install or use the app.
- You may still use the app even if you deny some permissions the app requests. Of course, if you deny an app to access camera, when you try to use camera in that app, you will get an error.
- You can mange specific permissions for any apps at any time.
Please note, app permissions control is a privacy feature, not a security feature. You should not install apps from unreliable sources.
How to grant app permissions in Android Marshmallow?
For apps optimized for Android Marshmallow, you will not be asked to grant any permissions when you install them.
When you use the app, and when special features are required for the first time, for example, use the camera, read your contact list, access some sensors, you will be prompted the window to grant (allow) or deny the permission as shown below.
In the screenshot below, OneDrive app is trying to access your media files. If you are comfortable with it, you can tap Allow.
If you tap Deny, the app will not be able to see, and therefore not be able to backup your media files to the drive. You need understand the consequences.
By default, the system will remember your choice.
So, next time, when you launch the app again, it will NOT ask for the same permission again.
If you denied the permission by error, or you want to remove the app permissions granted, you can do it at any time. In other words, you can easily manage app permissions on your Android Marshmallow devices at any time.
Actually, you have two ways to manage app permissions in Android Marshmallow:
- Manage app permissions of any specific apps.
- Manage specific app permissions.
The outcomes are identical.
How to manage app permissions for a specific app in Android Marshmallow?
You can manage app permissions for individual apps.
Go to Settings — Apps to access application manager as shown below. For some Android devices, it may be Settings– Application Manager.
FYI, application manager in Android is for you to uninstall apps, manage app cache and app data. In Android Marshmallow, you now can manage app permissions.
For example, you want to manage or check permissions granted and denied for Amazon Music.
Tap Amazon music (marked as 1) as shown below.
Tap Permissions as shown below.
Now, 3 app permissions are listed for Amazon music as shown below:
- Contacts. This means, Amazon music wants to read your contact details and find contacts on the phone.
- Phone. Amazon music also wants to read your phone status and your identity.
- Storage. This app also wants to read and write on your phone. This is understandable because you may want to download some music.
Right to each of these 3 permissions, you can find the switch to deny or grant this specific permission for this app.
For example, as a music app, there is no reason to read contacts or access phone status.
So, it is probably safe to deny them.
But if you deny storage permission, you will find out that the app may not work properly.
So, do not deny app permission unless you know what you are doing.
You may be curious that how the Amazon music app access internet as internet access is not listed here.
In Android Marshmallow, only permissions related to your personal or private info are listed by default. Other basic functions, like access internet, are not listed by default and you cannot disable them per app.
As shown below, in app permissions page, tap the menu button (3 vertical dots near top right).
Tap all permissions as shown above.
Now, all permissions are listed. You can tap on individual items to get detailed explanation of the permission.
Please note, permissions under Other app capabilities cannot be turned off.
How to manage specific app permissions in Android Marshmallow?
You can also manage specific app permissions in Android Marshmallow.
In Settings—Apps page as shown above, tap Settings icon (gear icon, marked as 2 in the screenshot). You will be directed to app configurations page as shown below.
Tap App permissions as shown below to see all kinds of app permissions. Again, these are only the permissions related to your personal or private data.
For example, there are 35 apps on my phone requesting to access camera. 32 of them were granted this permission (they can access camera).
This means 3 of them cannot access camera (although they request this capability). These may include newly installed apps that have not been used yet, and apps for which you denied denied the permission.
Tap Camera as shown below. You will then see a list of apps that request camera access.
You can tap the switch to disable (deny) or enable (grant) camera access for individual apps as shown below.
Why my settings for app permissions are different on my Android Marshmallow device?
The new app permission control system is a core part of Android Marshmallow. So, this feature should be available in all Android phones and tablets with Marshmallow.
But different vendors may put the settings in different locations.
Application manager is always presented in all Android devices. Some vendors may call it apps. Others may call it application manager under settings. So, it is easy to find app permissions for individual apps in application manager.
But for app permission list (under app configuration page), the location varies.
For LG devices with Android Marshmallow, it is under Settings–Apps (under General)–Menu key– Configure apps.
Can you manage app permissions in Android Marshmallow devices now?
If you have any questions or encounter any problems on managing app permissions in Android Marshmallow devices, please let us know in the comment box below.
The community will help you.
For any questions or problems with Android Marshmallow, please check our Android Marshmallow Guide page.
If your question is about Android Lollipop, please check out Android Lollipop Guide page.