Today, you can only buy TV shows outright, with most episodes starting at $1.99 and maxing out at $3.99. The latest version of Google Play Movies & TV hints that you’ll soon be able to rent entire seasons of shows.
About APK Insight: In this “APK Insight” post, we’ve decompiled the latest version of an application that Google uploaded to the Play Store. When we decompile these files (called APKs, in the case of Android apps), we’re able to see various lines of code within that hint at possible future features. Keep in mind that Google may or may not ever ship these features, and our interpretation of what they are may be imperfect. We’ll try to enable those that are closer to being finished, however, to show you how they’ll look in the case that they do ship. With that in mind, read on.
Renting TV shows in Google Play
When buying a film in Google Play, you’re presented with options to buy outright or rent. Choosing the latter is often significantly cheaper and gives you a 30-day period to start watching and 48 hours to complete.
Version 4.15 of Play Movies & TV for Android introduces those two purchasing options for television. Strings don’t explicitly cite shows, but does reference a “season.” Once live, users would presumably see the same “Rent season from” box that notes the cheapest option in the lowest quality, followed by pricing for SD, HD, and 4K.
<string name=”buy_at_hd_season”>Buy HD season %1$s</string>
<string name=”buy_at_sd_season”>Buy SD season %1$s</string>
<string name=”buy_at_uhd_season”>Buy 4K season %1$s</string>
<string name=”buy_full_season_from”>Buy season from %1$s</string>
From these initial strings, it does not appear that you can rent individual episodes. Seasons usually cost over $25 and it makes sense for Google to make this expensive collection — which users might not necessarily want to keep after watching — cheaper to purchase.
Given the multiple hours of content involved, it’s not clear how much time Google will give you to watch a season rental. A shorter period would require renters to binge content.
The mention of 4K in the strings could indicate that UHD TV shows are coming. It could also just be a carry over of the UI from movies as there are currently no 4K television shows available for purchase in the Play Store. All content today maxes out at HD.
<string name=”rent_full_season_from”>Rent season from %1$s</string>
<string name=”rent_at_hd_season”>Rent HD season %1$s</string>
<string name=”rent_at_sd_season”>Rent SD season %1$s</string>
<string name=”rent_at_uhd_season”>Rent 4K season %1$s</string>
How to update?
Thanks to JEB Decompiler, which some APK Insight teardowns benefit from.