Software Updates

GlassWire 3.0 for Android is now LIVE!

In 2018 we released our first major GlassWire Android update. We were fortunate that our fans loved the app and we were proud to have a 4.8 rating in Google Play!

Then later in 2019 Android 10 was released by Google. Unfortunately Google made it impossible for us to graph network data in real-time due to unexpected changes with an API we used. As our user base updated their phones to the latest Android OS versions they would find real-time data would no longer update reliably and our ratings fell.

We opened a ticket with Google and they marked it as “won’t fix”. We also found that Google made it impossible for us to block data by WiFi only, or Mobile only with our firewall.

Then even worse, many phones would kill our app completely so it couldn’t count accurately, or count at all in some cases. We were not the only developers with this issue either. It was a very difficult, sad, and stressful time for our team.

We could have given up, but instead we decided to completely rewrite the GlassWire Android app from scratch and make it super light and accurate, and that’s what we did!

We’re excited to announce that our major Android update is now available this morning in Google Play!

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2000px-Get_it_on_Google_play.svg_-768x226-1.png

While the new app doesn’t show real-time stats due to limitations made by Google, it’s now super light and it should always count data perfectly!

It also has an awesome new bubble effect that shows what apps are using your data.

In this example Chrome is using mobile data.

Plus, our 3.0 GlassWire update should never get killed, no matter how angry your phone is at it! This is due to how light the new GlassWire app now runs and how little resources it uses.

The firewall has now also changed where you can create firewall profiles. Create one profile for WiFi, and another for Mobile. It’s super easy to use!

The updated firewall can also allow or deny connections from newly installed apps. Ever have an app immediately use up your data immediately on install? This should never happen again if “allow or deny” mode is switched to “on” with GlassWire’s updated firewall.

Like dark themes? We know how important it is to have a dark theme these days, so we have included one dark theme for free for all Android users who use our app. And of course paid users get access to a bunch of different dark and light themes!

We have also rewritten our “speed meter” feature to make it work for the latest Android OS versions. Rewriting the speed meter was major work for us so we have made this one of our paid features going forward.

GlassWire for Android is an ad-free tracking-free app. In fact our app can’t access the network at all! Check our privacy policy for details on how we can’t access your stats at all because they never leave your phone.

We feel it’s important to be one of the few data management apps on Android that doesn’t track users, or fill up their phones with ads.

Since we have no ads we depend on our fans paying a few dollars to support our work. We’re grateful for those that decided to do so, but even if you don’t purchase GlassWire, our app is extremely powerful even with its free functionality and it will never expire or stop working.

Almost a million people have used our Android app to stay under data limits, reveal data wasters, and save money on their data plans!

GlassWire (free or paid) will always reveal data wasting apps, or suspicious app behavior. Our app will alert you any time a newly installed app starts using data. Plus we now have new more accurate data plans that track roaming, have zero rated app options, and can keep track of roll-over minutes. Monitoring data usage is especially important with new 5G phones that are using data faster than ever!

And of course if you don’t like apps tracking you or wasting your precious data without your permission use our paid firewall to instantly block them.

Why do many free “Data Usage” apps use data themselves?
We discovered a lot of these free data usage collection apps exist solely to collect your personal app usage data to sell to advertisers or other app developers. We did not want to use a data usage app that was logging details about every app we use to share it with third parties. In what database was our private app usage data being stored, and what if that database was hacked or made public? To make matters worse, we found that at least one of these applications collected personally identifiable information.

Is your current “Data Usage” app tracking you?
Do you want your phone app usage logged in a database then linked to your identity so others can see details about how you use your phone every day? We didn’t want that either. Check the privacy policy of the data usage app you currently use by going to their Google Play app page “privacy policy”.

GlassWire is a data usage app that helps protect your privacy.
Your GlassWire data usage and app usage information never leaves your phone. We could not see or access your app usage even if we wanted to. Plus, we’re not an advertising or marketing company. We only make money through sales of premium versions of our software.

Thanks for trying our major update out and if you enjoy the update please consider leaving a review on Google Play or subscribing!

Give GlassWire 3.0 for Android a try now!

We’d really like to hear your feedback and we are grateful for bug reports. If you find any issues please tap the bottom right menu inside the app itself and choose “send feedback”. Or join our forum to discuss GlassWire 3.0 for Android!

Sincerely, The GlassWire Team

Discussion

31 responses to ‘GlassWire 3.0 for Android is now LIVE!

  1. Hi There

    I have been a long time user of your app, very happy with it. A bit less so after this update, I must say.

    A couple of questions:
    1) You claim that a limitation introduced by google makes now impossible to show real-time stats. However I see that I can still get live speed usage by upgrading to the paid version. Can you please elaborate on this point ?

    2) if that limitation arose by the introduction of Android 10 and made the app behaving badly with that Android version, would you consider to have a “GlassWire Classic” app for user with older Android phones ? On my phone (HTC 10, Android 6) your app has always worked seamlessly and never gave me any reason to complain (inaccurate readings, crashing or else). It´s a pity that with this new version all the most useful features are gone.

    3) Even taking into account this limitation, why not maintain at least the possibility of customizing graphs and alerts with at least 1 hour granularity ?
    I´d say that is the bare minimum in terms of usability.

    Thanks in advance for your support

  2. Hello Gianni,

    Thanks for your feedback.

    1. The speed meter just shows bandwidth usage in numbers. Before we had a real-time graph. That real-time graph is now impossible unfortunately.

    2. We’ll discuss, but every time a person updates their phone our app will break and we’ll instantly get a 1 star review that says our app is broken. We’re very burned out on this situation unfortunately, but we’ll see what’s possible as a Google Play developer.

    3. Because it’s technically impossible. The data updates too slowly so the stats look wrong. We tested carefully.

    We’d love to keep everything as it was before but unfortunately it’s completely impossible if we want our app to run on Android at all and not get killed by your phone.

    The plus side is that the app is now super light, super accurate, and should be rock solid for firewall blocking.

    • I have updated the app and loving every bit of the new version. You guys really heard our concerns and what a nice app you have built. Wow, I can track my data again! Changing the rating on Google Play right away. You guys deserve all the kudos!

  3. Am I correct that in version 3.0, there is now no way to specify that an app be blocked by the firewall only on mobile networks and never on WiFi? For example, I used to have it set up so that an app like Facebook would always be blocked from using mobile data, but had free reign on WiFi. I basically just set it and forget it. Now if I put the app behind the firewall, it’s blocked on both. So now I have to remember to disable the firewall when I connect to the WiFi in my house, and then remember to re-enable it when I leave the house.

    • Will, that’s absolutely correct. “We also found that Google made it impossible for us to block data by WiFi only, or Mobile only with our firewall.”

      We found that the method used to do this leaks badly with many phone types making it unusable… It would be misleading to offer that feature. If you’re using another app that claims to do this Wifi/Mobile separate blocking please use extreme caution.

      You’ll have to remember to switch profiles when leaving Wifi and going to Mobile. We’re looking into automatic profile switching if WiFi only or Mobile only can be detected reliably.

      • Ok I did notice the data leaks in previous versions when switching between mobile and WiFi (and vice versa). Thanks for the clarification.

  4. Gianni very politely expressed my reactions to and skepticism about version 3 and the justification for it’s limitations. Like Gianni’s devices, mine use fixed/permanent versions of Android (6.01 and 8.1) that won’t break version 2 of GlassWire because OS updates aren’t provided . GlassWire’s new premium for live data, coupled with my inability to side-load a non-crashing version 2 (from my phone’s copy of that version’s APK), increase my suspicions of the justifications given for removing the app’s live data capability. As for no longer being able to present live data in a graphical format, well, perhaps not in Android 9/+, but my Android 8.1 phone could do it minutes before the “upgrade” (“downgrade” for me), but now cannot. Hmm. Determined to recover this lost capability, I checked out the apps that compete with GlassWire. They’re almost duplicates of GlassWire version 3. Where GlassWire version 2 Had a competitive edge, version 3 does not, as I see it. One step backward for one user — one giant leap backward for GlassWire. 😩

    • Hello Jon,

      I also loved the live graph. That’s exactly how our Windows software works and that’s what we do! I can guarantee that I’m a lot more frustrated than you about removing this feature. We’re just developers living in Google’s world unfortunately. We’re not the only app developers who feel this way https://dontkillmyapp.com/problem.

      We can see what percentage of our users use what Android OS version and for most people our previous app was completely broken by Google already. That’s why we had poor reviews that the counting was wrong, and that the app was constantly getting killed.

      The new update is super light and it solves these issues. Google now wants developers to make super light and simple apps and we have done what’s required to continue to exist in the Google Android ecosystem.

      The good news is that the new app is super accurate, super light, and the firewall is rock solid.

      • Thanks for considering my comments. I will say, on further research, that GlassWire (version 3) does appear to have at least one advantage over the competition in this respect: tapping a graph column does cause the underlying apps’ and their respective usages to be displayed For That Time Interval. However, in the current version, I’m seeing identical columns (and identical underlying usages) for successive time intervals (in pairs). In other words, the sum of the columns exceeds the overall total — for the day. I assume this is a bug pending a fix. Another bug (?): the app setting for the default (?) interval is ignored. I’ve made “Day” my app setting but the chart always opens in Month view (and always combined wifi+mobile instead of what I had previously chosen).

        • Jon, we have seen this also with the identical data amounts during a certain time period. It’s a bug with some phone types with the API we use. We’re hoping a future update will fix it. It’s especially noticeable on Samsung phones and we have seen other similar apps with the same exact issue!

          The good news is that eventually it updates correctly after a little while, then the stats are perfect. It’s a temporary thing…

          For the view changing I’ll report this. For me I personally always choose Day/Wifi and Mobile and it stays put. This is not on purpose.

          If you could go to the bottom right three line option and choose “send feedback” it will help us find and fix the issue faster with your phone type. Thanks!

  5. How about disabling the live graph on android 10 only and allowing that function to run on android 9 and below?
    As for me I am missing that feature too much.
    Won’t it be win-win situation if we could block that function on 10 so that app don’t stop working or showing wrong data and also devices with lower android versions enjoying the feature.

    • Hello Sudeep, while the old version of GlassWire doesn’t work at all on Android 10, on Android 9 it is delayed, stutters, and seems mostly broken. It’s the same changes to the API.

      We don’t have the resources to support two apps for older phones that are being updated and replaced every day anyway, sorry.

  6. I have paid for my Windows version and am a little annoyed by the fact that I need to pay again on Android, however my main gripe is there is only a subscription option and not a forever option. In general I avoid subscriptions like the plague.

    • We’re trying to find a way to link our desktop and Android software sales together, but we don’t have a way yet. That’s why we don’t mention Android at all on our desktop order pages.

      We made our Android app less than $5 to try to make up for it. Thanks for your feedback.

  7. I don’t believe You! I have my reasons. This is BS.! There is a reason Google doesn’t want real time monitoring and I know why!
    My bandwidth and data lmits have shown me the extraneous background crap thats going on. They are throttling.
    So again get bent. It’s big google wanting their revenue, its like bookmarks and browsers AND SEARCH ENGINES!
    The same thing. You will not be getting an up vote!

  8. Could you adapt this app to Chinese ? Although most of the words are easy to understand, the first language always intimately.
    If you don’t mind that I would like to translate it for you.

  9. Ok you claim this affects Android 9 and Android 10 but what about people with Android 8.1 LG phone users? Android 8.1 should work the same because those dark entities have neglected to update Android 8.1 phones. 🤔 Also my laptop uses the Wi-Fi hotspot I create with my phone and the PC version of GlassWire is not affected by anything that Google would do. My phone isn’t a Google phone but it has Android 8.1 and its an LG G4. I think to do real-time data monitoring is possible but you will have to write the low-level api and make it from scratch. As for Google if they are trying to aid and abet by removing transparency then they are proving their guilt and I’m sure there will be a class action suit filed. Phone users want transparency and no background activity going on without detailed information and control.

  10. Hello Shawn,

    Android 11 is coming out soon, then 12. Most of our user base is now on Android 9 or older. We’re quite a small company so we can’t support two different app versions. I wish we had the resources to do so.

    Yes, it’s true our Windows software still works great and we hope it stays that way!

    We have really spent a lot of time investigating the real-time data issue. It’s not only an API problem. Android phones are very strict with background apps. Perhaps we could do this extreme hack/customization you speak of, but you’d find our app would run down your battery almost instantly with no official API. Sad but true.

    But things always change and it’s possible Google will change things with Android 12, or 13, or 14. When it does we’ll go back to showing live data, because that’s what we love to do!

    For now though we’ve done the best we can do with what tools are given to us with Android.

    • So how is it that the GlassWire 2.0.324r for Android crashes when reinstalling it? Is it phoning home? Shouldn’t it still work on Android 8.1?

      • Shawn, we don’t support or distribute 2.0 anymore. Where did you get it?

        Our apps have no ability to access the network at all. I’d guess we’re probably the only one that doesn’t “phone home”. You can verify it with other apps and see we don’t access the network.

        If you downloaded an APK outside Google Play and it says “GlassWire” and it’s phoning home then it may not be our app, or it may be modified somehow.

        • GlassWire 2.0.324r was downloaded from Google Play and then I used AppBackup&Restore to backup the apk to a restore directory.
          It’s the official 2.0.324r apk. It worked great since June of 2019 all the way until this month and I noticed that version 3.0.xxx was on the phone. I never updated so I thought something suspicious was going on. Then I saw that the 5 minute update graph interval was gone and the display was now bar graphs.

          • It must have happened through Google Play. We have no way to change your App Backup and Restore, but maybe Google can?

        • “It must have happened through Google Play. We have no way to change your App Backup and Restore, but maybe Google can?”

          What? Google changed your 2.0.324r version so that it crashes upon start up?
          Or do you mean Google changed my stored backup copy of the 2.0.324r apk of GlassWire on CD? That would be a feat!
          Or do you mean Google changed the 2.0.324r by upgrading it to the 3.0 version?

          • I am not sure what happened. I apologize for the issue, it was not intentional.

  11. It’s so bad that google closed this feature. It’s a punch in the face of user privacy and open systems.

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