Official F-Droid repository

Some people run Android on their devices but do not have access to the Google Play Store, and so rely on alternatives like F-Droid or finding and installing APKs from sites like apkmirror.com.

I do this myself as I refuse to have a Google account.

Would Monzo consider catering for this admitidly small minority by providing an official source of the Monzo Android app outside of the Play Store?

An obvious option would be for Monzo to operate their own F-Droid repository which users could add, giving a trusted, up-to-date method of installing and updating the app.

Monzo says it wants to make money work for everyone. How about those of us outside of Apple and Google’s two walled gardens? :kissing_heart:

I believe Monzo relies on Google Play Services for some of its functions on Android, so that wouldnt really be an option on a DeGoogleFied phone

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I like this word and must try to use it more

I’ve been running the Monzo app on a phone without Google Play Services for the last year. It functions well enough - the main issuing being that you don’t get any notifications.

I get the Monzo APK from APKMirror and install it manually, but obviously this is not a great experience. If nothing else I need to remember to check every now and then for an updated version myself.

So, you want a banking app to give you the option to run on an unsupported operating system? There is a reason those ‘walled gardens’ exist, security being one of them.

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Nope. The app already runs without Google Play Services. What I’m asking for is an official distribution point of the app outside of the Play Store.

If anything this would be a security improvement. People like myself would no longer have to trust random APK mirror sites and would be able to keep up with app updates.

If Monzo fancy going further and disentangling their app from Google’s services to better support those outside of the ecosystem then I’d be the first to celebrate! :tada: But that’s not what I’m asking here.

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I have very limited knowledge of Android, but surely the security built in to the OS itself is the reason why Monzo would not, and should not, offer anything outside of the Play Store.

That you are willing to forego that (for whatever reason) is a personal decision.

What he means is he wants a trusted source for the app that is not the play store.

As a Linux user id rather goodbye the play store and I use F Droid for what I can. (I use the play store for only Monzo and that’s it)

The current way of running Monzo on a de googled phone is to get the APK from some shady site. (Not secure by any means)

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As @desu put well, the advantage of installing from the Play Store as opposed to a mirror site is that you can trust you’re installing a genuine copy of the app.

This is not some unique ability of the Play Store though. Monzo could easily provide another source of the app.

Fair enough, and makes sense if it’s possible.

As long as your desire for this doesn’t influence the security of Monzo for others then why not.

Thanks for helping me understand!

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I’m not 100% sure if I’d trust F Droid for high profile targets like banking apps, not that there’s a reason not to, just I’m not sure.

Check signatures and also hashes is the way I’d say.

Get set up and then it shouldn’t take more than a couple of mins each time.

Also I think it makes more sense for monzo to offer the APK from their own site than a 3rd party.

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That’s actually what I’m suggesting. :slight_smile: The Monzo app is not eligible to be in the default F-Droid repository anyway since it’s not FLOSS.

But you can add custom repositories in the F-Droid client and Monzo could easily run their own to serve their app; with no third-party involvement.

Serving the APK as a simple download (along with checksums etc.) would be decent. My reservations there are:

  • as a bank, being seen to encourage the practice of downloading APKs and installing without verification probably isn’t a good look
  • doesn’t solve the knowing-when-there’s-an-update problem

Another advantage of providing an F-Droid repo as opposed to just an APK download is that 99% of people in the position of avoiding the Play Store will already be using and trusting F-Droid. Nice to have everything in one place (and trusting as few apps as possible with the permission to install apps!).

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+1 here. Seems like a fairly low effort task to support customers on older devices running custom ROMs (because manufacturers… planned obsolescence… etc) and those who have a clearer picture of just how much data goes to Google and have done something about it (I haven’t, I value convenience far too much)

Would be a good nod to security, privacy, sustainability and open source from Monzo

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This is why I’m hopeful that they will consider it ^^