Google Play Overview Updated July 29, 2022

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628 'Google Play' stories

March 2012 - July 2022

Before the unified Play branding, Google had the Android Market, Google Music, and Google eBookstore. Google decided to merge and rebrand its individual digital offerings into the Play Store in March of 2012.

The Play Store is now the default place to purchase apps, movies & television, music, books, and news subscriptions for all Android devices. The latter four offerings having their individual Android and iOS apps to watch, listen, and read purchased content. Most content can also be accessed through the web.

In April of 2016, the suite of icons were redesigned in a similar style to provide a consistent look across all devices and the web.

Google Play Stories July 29

Google has just issued new policy updates for Play Store developers, and the new rules take aim directly at misinformation, impersonation, and annoying game ads… among other things.

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Google Play Stories February 28

Google Play Pass is bringing a catalog of paid apps and games to India, nearly three years after launching in other countries.

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Google Play Stories January 27

Verizon is dropping support for carrier billing through the Google Play Store

The Google Play Store offers several ways to pay for apps and subscriptions, including the option of adding the charge to your carrier bill. Verizon, though, is now dropping support for carrier billing in the Play Store.

Google Play Stories January 25

How to use a Google Play gift card and where to buy one

The Google Play store offers tons of content for all customers – not just Android users. Movies, TV shows, books, and more can be found in the Play Store. A gift card for the Google Play store is a great gift for anyone. So how do you buy one and how can it be used? Read our guide to find out.

Google Play Stories December 16, 2021

T-Mobile is handing out $10 Google Play credits to Google One subscribers

T-Mobile has been offering better support for more and more Google services as of late, including the recent arrival of a special Google One tier just for T-Mobile customers. Now, T-Mobile is handing out free Google Play credits as a gift to its subscribers.

Google Play Stories January 8, 2021

In the days since the attack on the US Capitol this week, social network Parler has been put into the spotlight. Now, Google has suspended the Parler app from the Play Store on Android, citing the app’s lack of moderation as a reason to remove it.

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Google Play Stories July 13, 2020

[Update: Fixed] Samsung Wearable sideloads the Samsung Pay APK, breaking Google rules

Samsung’s various smartwatches are some of the best choices for Android users, but they come with the caveat that you have to install several apps to get them up and running on non-Samsung devices. That includes the individual install of Samsung Pay on your phone, but now Samsung is breaking Google’s terms of service by attempting to sideload the Samsung Pay APK from the Wearable app.

Google Play Stories June 8, 2020

To help fill the “app gap” on Chromebooks, Google brought the Play Store and compatibility with Android apps and games to just about every Chromebook model. Now, Google is adding a new section to the Play Store to showcase “premium” Android games on various Chromebook devices.

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Google Play Stories April 16, 2020

With many now staying at home 24/7 to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Google has been pushing health and fitness apps through the Google Play Store. On your Android phone, you’ll be able to see collections of various types of health apps, and on Android TV, Google is also pushing at-home workouts.

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Google Play Stories April 6, 2020

Google extends Play Pass trials to 30 days for a limited time

Google Play Pass makes hundreds of apps and games free for Android users, and now Google is offering a special deal to get you to try it out. For the next few weeks, Google Play Pass is offering an extended 30-day trial.

Google Play Stories March 27, 2020

Misinformation is spreading like wildfire in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, and one source of that has been the highly controversial Alex Jones and his Infowars outlet. Today, Google has finally taken action against the Infowars Android app, removing it from the Play Store.

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Google Play Stories March 16, 2020

Google tells devs to expect longer app review times in light of coronavirus

Google is now notifying developers that app review times could be extended “due to adjusted work schedules”. It seems likely that this has to do with the disruptions to normal business that the coronavirus (COVID-19) is causing at Google and other firms across the country.

Google Play Stories November 11, 2019

Following up on the same event from 2018, Google Play has just opened up voting for its Users’ Choice awards for 2019. Open for the next two weeks, this gives users the ability to vote for some of their favorite apps.

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Google Play Stories August 29, 2019

In 2017, Google launched the Play Security Reward Program to encourage researchers to find vulnerabilities in first and third-party applications. The initiative now includes all Android applications with over 100 million installs.

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Google Play Stories July 1, 2019

Google has updated its developer content policy on the Google Play Store to immediately ban any applications that sell or help assist in the sale of marijuana or products containing THC.

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Google Play Stories March 6, 2019

Google Play’s Rewarded Products format lets Android gamers watch ads to earn in-app items

Mobile games today are predominantly free-to-play with developers making a living from ads or in-app purchases. Google Play is introducing new Rewarded Products today that will help creators earn revenue when players watch ads to earn free in-app items.

Google Play Stories March 4, 2019

Google handing out $1 Play Store credits to some users to celebrate 7-year anniversary

March 2019 marks the 7-year anniversary of the launch of the Google Play Store. To celebrate, the company is offering up free $1 Play Store credits to some users on Android.

Google Play Stories December 17, 2018

Play Store’s machine learning based anti-spam system removes millions of reviews per week

The Play Store has a problem with spam, there’s no way around it. With causes ranging from apps that borderline beg users for reviews and companies that pay for fake reviews, it’s obvious something needed to be done. This year, Google has acknowledged all the spam and finally has begun to do something about it by creating a machine-learning-powered anti-spam system to remove fake reviews from the Play Store.

Google Play Stories December 6, 2018

Google Play testing storage indicator in ‘My Apps’ section, ‘Free Up Space’ option

We’re keeping more on our smartphones than ever before, and that means storage is hard to keep up with. Now, it appears that Google is testing out a storage indicator that resides directly within the Play Store.

Google Play Stories December 3, 2018

Google Play Best of 2018 Awards reveal top Android apps, books, and movies

With the year almost coming to a close, Google’s various services are beginning to recap 2018. The Play Store is starting with the Best of 2018 in Android apps, Play Movies & TV, and Play Books, with the first two categories featuring Fan Favorite voting this year.

Google Play Stories November 22, 2018

[Update: Live] Google Play Cyber Week includes a $.99 movie rental on Thanksgiving

For the Google Store and Made by Google, Black Friday has become more of a week-long affair with deals coming in at various tiers. Today, Google Play is joining in on the festivities with a Cyber Week that most notably sees your first movie rental drop to $.99 on Thanksgiving Day.

Google Play Stories October 11, 2018

App Store sees massive growth, generated 93% more revenue than Google Play in Q3

It’s no secret that Apple’s App Store makes more than Google’s Play Store when it comes to revenue. However, the latest data recorded by Sensor Tower (via TechCrunch), shows that in Q3 of 2018, Apple widened the gap by a huge amount.

Google Play Stories August 2, 2018

Google Play’s redesigned in-app purchase UI is more reachable, rolling out now

In-app purchases (IAPs) — for better or worse — are how many developers today monetize games and applications. Google is now beginning to roll out a redesigned and more straightforward payment prompt for users.

Google Play Stories July 27, 2018

Google Play’s developer policy updated to ban crypto mining, firearm sales apps, and more

There are hundreds of thousands of apps on Google Play which reach millions of users. With that in mind, Google has a developer policy in place to restrict what can and cannot be downloaded from the Play Store. Recently, the company has updated that policy to restrict cryptocurrency mining apps, among others…

Google Play Stories June 22, 2018

G Suite accounts can strangely no longer review Play Store content

It can be frustrating sometimes to be using a G Suite account, as Google sometimes enacts random restrictions that don’t make a whole lot of sense. Recently, Google changed some policies on the Play Store that has further restricted these accounts.

Google Play Stories March 26, 2018

Google appears to be recommending ‘lite’ apps via the Play Store to some users

With initiatives like Android Go and Android One, developers have spent a fair bit of time trying to slim down their apps. One solution many have adopted is creating “lite” apps which ditch features for smaller apps sizes and better performance. Now, it seems Google Play is recommending these apps to some users.

Google Play Stories March 19, 2018

Ahead of the Game Developers Conference, Google announced new Maps APIs to allow developers to create more Pokemon Go-like augmented reality apps, as well as video ads for the Play Store. At its 2018 developer keynote, Google today unveiled an extension of Instant Apps aimed at games.

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Google Play Stories February 6, 2018

Back in 2016, Amazon introduced Prime Exclusive Phones that took a page from its Kindle line and featured lockcsreen offers and ads. In exchange, the devices are available to Prime subscribers at a subsidized price. This month, Amazon is dropping lockscreen offers and ads on all Prime Exclusive Phones. This is likely due to recent Google Play rule changes.

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Google Play Stories January 19, 2018

Google Play teases audiobook sales ahead of official arrival, will offer 50% off first title

While most people think of Google Play as their center to download apps and games for their Android device, it’s a home for a lot of other content. That includes movies, TV shows, music, books, comics, and more. Now, though, it appears audiobooks are being added to that list.

Google Play Stories December 19, 2017

Google today announced a number of new changes and policies for Android developers to improve app security and performance on Google Play. Coming into effect throughout 2018 and 2019, these policies cover what API levels to target and a new 64-bit requirement

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Google Play Stories December 7, 2017

Google today launched a new initiative to bring more inclusivity into mobile gaming. “Change the Game” conducted interesting research into how women play and the real-world effects that a gender gap has on games. In turn, Google is planning diversity programs, partnerships, and research throughout 2018, starting by highlighting games on the Play Store.

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Google Play Stories December 1, 2017

Google bans Play Store apps that put ads on your lockscreen

Ads in apps aren’t necessarily a bad thing, but when they invade portions of the phone you can’t avoid or constantly have to interact with, that can cross a line. Lockscreen ads have shown up quite frequently in apps on the Play Store, but that’s no more, thanks to a policy change by Google.

With a month left till 2018, it’s time for the best of the year recaps. Google Play is kicking it off with its “Best of 2017” highlights that include the top apps, games, songs, movies, TV shows, and books.

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Google Play Stories October 19, 2017

For the past several years, Google has hosted a developer event called Playtime centered around the Play Store and apps to share best practices and new tools. At this year’s Playtime, Google announced a number of new tools for developers, including a Security Reward Program, as well as some new features for the Play Store.

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Google Play Stories September 26, 2017

Google announces 2017’s top three indie games from US and Canadian developers

Back in July, Google took submissions for the best indie games of the year from US and Canadian developers. The company hosted a festival over the weekend in San Francisco where the public was able to play the games, as well as vote on finalists. Today, Google unveiled this year’s winners and listed those apps in the Play Store.

Google Play Stories September 16, 2017

Google appears to be testing app sizes in Play Store search results

Google never really stops testing changes to the Google Play Store, and it appears yet another one is underway. First spotted by some users on Reddit, Google seems to be testing replacing app ratings with the download sizes of those apps in search results.

Google Play Stories September 13, 2017

It’s 2017, 4K is everywhere. 4K TVs are getting cheaper, 4K projectors are constantly hitting the market, HDR is becoming more prevalent, and heck, we’ve even got 4K displays on smartphones. All those extra pixels are a big deal, but movie studios continue to charge ridiculous prices for them. Apple just showed the entire industry how it’s done, and its time for them to follow suit.

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Google Play Stories August 14, 2017

Peter Dinklage’s ‘Rememory’ is coming to Google Play Movies before hitting theaters

Starring Peter Dinklage, Julia Ormond, and the late Anton Yelchin, Rememory is a new movie that will be available for free exclusively on Google Play Movies starting on August 24 before being released in select theatres on September 8. The film is an upcoming sci-fi mystery featuring futuristic technology that is capable of recalling past memories.

Google Play Stories August 11, 2017

Google Play Movies & TV app arrives on VIZIO smart TVs

The Google Play Movies & TV app is officially arriving on Vizio TVs today for select models, allowing direct access to your Google Play library and content available to purchase. That means content you ordered on your Android phones or tablets is available natively on these new TVs, though they’ve long been able to Chromecast as well.

Google Play Stories August 3, 2017

The Google Play Store is updating its ranking algorithms to take into account app quality and performance. For end users, search results will rank more stable apps higher up, while developers are encouraged to address issues to prevent penalization.

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Google Play Stories August 2, 2017

Google Play gives developers another 20 characters for app titles

Google Play’s titles, at a glance, should probably only be used to give the title of the application, leaving the description to describe it. Over the years, we’ve seen developers push the limits with this aspect, and recently, Google increased the character limit significantly.

Google Play Stories July 20, 2017

Google Play’s new curated lists will help you find your new favorite app

Finding great new apps on Google Play can be hard given the massive number available, but Google wants to do something about that. In a blog post yesterday, Google revealed a new feature for Play’s Editors’ Choice section which provides users with curated lists of apps hand-picked by Google Play Editors.

Google Play Stories July 19, 2017

Announced at I/O 2017, Google Play Protect is essentially a rebrand of the company’s existing suite of security services for Android devices. In a statement, Google notes that it is beginning to rollout today in the Play Services app and coming soon to the Play Store.

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Google Play services tells dreams to be their own boss in bizarre Play Store ad listing

Okay, so bear with me on this one. We’ve seen some strange stuff on Google’s various services through the years, but today Ron Amadeo of ArsTechnica may have stumbled upon one of the most bizarre. There’s an ad for Google Play Services in Google Play, with a really weird “inspirational” quote…

Google Play Stories July 11, 2017

Over the past year, Google has created several initiatives to highlight indie game developers in the Play Store. Continuing on last year’s efforts, the company has announced its second annual Google Play Indie Games Festival.

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Google Play Stories June 29, 2017

Google Play Store v8.0 adds inline changelogs to the app updates menu

Version 8.0 of the Google Play Store is rolling out to devices right now and while it doesn’t seem to add a ton of new features, it does add one new change that many can appreciate — inline change logs in the app updates menu.

Google Play is trying out something new this year — a storewide Summer sale starting today with deals across all of Google Play’s content. That includes movies, music, games, apps, subscriptions, and more all running through the middle of this month.

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Google Play Stories March 24, 2017

Google appears to be testing yet another new Play Store design tweak [Gallery]

Google is constantly evolving the look of Google Play, and recently it seems the company is testing out yet another new look for Play Store search results, this time showing off more information for a specific app directly from the search interface…

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