Preparing their developers for the upcoming Android KitKat v4.4, Google has advised developers to get ready to switch to the new guidelines where users would select their default SMS app.
While currently multiple SMS apps can gain access to your SMS, Google plans on streamlining the service to just one default SMS app chosen by the user. As such developers are asked to update their apps to work efficiently with Android v4.4. Developers are encouraged to turn off features of their apps when they’re not selected as the default SMS app on a device, and to offer users a quick prompt allowing them to change the default SMS app if the app in use on the device is not the default SMS app.
While this move could be related to the fact that Google is planning on replacing SMS in Android v4.4 with Hangouts, thus inducing the user to use its service instead of a third party app. However this would definitely help reduce the malware apps which can be used for silently sending SMS. Though the company did not reveal when Android 4.4 KitKat will be released, it said that we can expect it later this year.