Earlier today, Google released version 2.3.5 of its Gmail app for Android, giving you some new sync options to only check for priority-tagged conversations, and giving you the ability to set custom notification tones, among other features. There is one change you may not have been expecting with this new version, and it’s causing compatibility with some apps to break.
Behind the scenes, Google updated the app’s manifest to change the access rights for the Gmail database. While previously, other apps could easily access your messages, now a signature check will stop anything but the official Gmail app from doing so. That means that anything that relied on access to that data is now broken. It’s not clear if there will ever be a work-around for this change.
Some developers were notified of this change in advance, but all affected by it are likely dealing with hordes of confused users today. We can’t blame them; there’s no notice in Gmail 2.3.5’s release notes about this compatibility issue. So, if a mail-related app stopped working for you today, after upgrading Gmail, at least now you know what’s going on.