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App faking only the absolute necessary Apis to use Gcam without Play Services

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lukaspieper/Gcam-Services-Provider

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Gcam Services Provider

continuous License: MIT

This app "simulates" the Google Play Services that the Google Camera app (Gcam) requires, allowing the camera app to be used on devices without Google Play Services.

The only reason to consider Gcam-Services-Provider on GrapheneOS is the ability to use the button in Gcam that opens the last taken photo without having Google Photos installed. If you can do without it, you don't need this app.

Since April 2023 GrapheneOS is able to run Gcam without additional steps. Here is the relevant part of the changelog:

add generic compatibility shim catching the exception from the Gservices provider being missing to enable apps like Google Camera [...] to work without GSF installed since they don't have any actual hard dependency on either GSF or Play services

Before that, back in July 2021, GrapheneOS implemented a compatibility layer to use the original Google Play services without advanced permissions. For Gcam it was sufficient to install the Google Service Framework (GSF). If you already use the Sandboxed Play services, or you plan to use an app that requires Play services, you cannot use the Gcam Services Provider for technical reasons. This limitation applies beyond the boundaries of a user profile.

Comparison: microG

microG is a open source re-implementation of the Google Play Services (client side). Among other things, signature spoofing is used to achieve this goal. In comparison, this app only aims to get Gcam running without Play Services. Therefore this app does not need any security compromising hacks or permissions (no Internet access, no storage access and of course no root access).

How to install this app?

Using GrapheneOS? Make sure you read the comparison with GrapheneOS' Gcam support above!

Currently there are two versions of this app named "basic" and "photos". "Basic" includes everything you need to get Gcam running but the button showing the last taken photo in full size will not work. The "photos" version has all features from "basic" and adds support for this button but you cannot have the Google Photos app installed for technical reasons.

Note that this app comes without UI and therefore has no icon in the app drawer. But of course it is listed in the Android settings (e.g. for uninstallation).

Incompatible apps Download
Basic version - Google Service Framework (GSF)
- microg
GitHub
F-Droid
Photos version - Google Service Framework (GSF)
- microg
- Google Photos
GitHub

Gcam Compatibility

Google camera version Requirements Relevant issues
7.4 & 7.5
>=7.6 Compatible Android OS or modded Gcam #22

Known from/recommended by

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App faking only the absolute necessary Apis to use Gcam without Play Services

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