UC Browser has mysteriously disappeared from the Google Play Store

Hundreds of Android apps might be removed from the Google Play ...

Google seems to have taken down the UC Browser application from Play Store, although UC Web's other offering - the UC Browser Mini - is still available for download.

UC Browser, owned and developed by the Alibaba Group-owned UC Web, is popular for its data compression capabilities which enables it to load web pages quicker than its competitors.

Just recently, the browser hit a huge milestone: 500 million downloads on the Play Store. The disappearance of the app was first spotted by Reddit users.

The browser gained momentum in India over the last few years for its speed and sheer number of features, which included a robust download manager, customizable add-ons, and integration with third-party services.

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The action was taken after the application came under the Indian government's scanner for allegedly sending data. Today's delisting doesn't seem to be related to the security vulnerabilities reported in that article, however. In the meantime, it's worth noting that the UC Browser Mini, an alternative app built for less powerful devices, is still live on the Play Store. There were complaints that even if a user has uninstalled it or deleted the browsing data, the browser retains control of the DNS of user's device. A senior IT ministry official had then told news agency PTI that it may face ban in the country if found guilty. The report also ranked the UC Browser as the sixth most-downloaded application on Android platform in India.

UCWeb has also claimed that Indian users make up 100 million of its total monthly active users from around the world, with the latter figure reportedly reaching 420 million, per reports from 2016.

There's certainly more to this story and we'll be keeping an eye out for any official word on the matter.