Yandex.Kit is a customisable suite of mobile components available for most versions of Android OS. It has all the basics indispensable for the up-to-date mobile experience. Vendors selling their original Android devices in Russia can enjoy the full Yandex.Kit package, which currently includes an app store, launcher and dialer, browser, maps, a cloud app – 15 apps overall. OEMs targeting other markets can enjoy Yandex.Kit as a trio of Yandex products – Yandex.Shell UI, Yandex.Browser and Yandex.Store.
Interestingly enough, two Android OEMs, Huawei and Explay, will show Yandex.Kit devices at MWC. Which is interesting, because earlier this month, Ars Technica claimed that leaked GMS licensing terms prohibited companies from releasing Android forks (“The agreement places a company-wide ban on Android forks […]”). If that is indeed true, then Huawei (I’m not familiar with Explay) will be in for a surprise.
Alternatively, companies can release de-Googled Android phones (alongside Google Android phones) just fine. I guess we’ll find out.
There are many devices that pass Google certification and provide alternative stores and applications. Prominent examples are Sony phones with their PlayStation Mobile store, and Samsung. I think Google contracts are more related to defaults than exclusivity.
If Yandex.Kit are extra components provided to OEMs, I don’t see contradiction with Google rules, but we are talking about leaked rules and we don’t now what is the current text of those