Antivirus applications on Android aren’t really a necessity for the average user. On top of that, a vast majority of antivirus apps on the Play Store aren’t all that helpful. This is due to the fact that these apps can’t get enough information about the apps running on your devices, the network traffic, etc. because of the way Google has designed Android to sandbox apps as much as possible. Since antivirus apps on the Play Store are installed as user-level apps, the limited permissions prevent such apps from doing anything substantial. This might soon change as Microsoft is planning to bring its Defender antivirus to Android devices, however, only for corporate users.
As per a recent report from CNBC, Microsoft will be launching its Defender antivirus for both Android and iOS devices later this year. The antivirus software will only be made available to corporate users and it’s specifically aimed at Microsoft’s Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP), a security platform for corporations that rely on mobile device management. Unlike Microsoft’s Intune software, which enables IT administrators to manage employees’ PCs, smartphones and tablets, Defender will be more geared towards security than management. The antivirus has been designed to prevent users from visiting online destinations that Microsoft deems unsafe, thereby preventing any kind of malware and phishing attempts.
We believe that Microsoft Defender will prove to be more useful than any other antivirus apps on the Play Store as the company will, most likely, deliver it as a pre-installed system app which will have access to more information than user-level apps. This isn’t the first app that Microsoft will be releasing for the Android platform. The company already has its popular Office suite on the platform for quite a while and it has also released other apps like SMS Organizer, Microsoft Launcher, To Do, Math Solver and more. With Defender, the company aims to capture the $80 billion addressable security market on the platform.
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