Google Play Store update brings in-app purchase markers and a touch of social networking

December 8, 2013
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Google has just pushed out an update to the Google Play Store app that can turn out to be a mixed blessing to users. While it does offer a few new conveniences, it also now integrates a bit more with Google's social networking ecosystem.

The new Google Play Store will feature an indicator telling users if an app, whether free or paid, has in-app purchases or IAP. The indicator doesn't offer anything more than that, unfortunately. It should, however, give users a heads up that the free app they're downloading will have some strings attached.

The other new major feature for the Play Store app is an activity feed. Those familiar with digital distribution systems like Steam will be familiar with how one can opt to show others latest purchases, played games, and other forms of activity. That will similarly be the case here to some extent. Users will be able to view and share with others a stream of their activities, though it is not clear whether those will be limited to +1 or reviews only. There is also an amount of integration with Google+, allowing users to view a user's Google+ profile directly from the Play Store app. It is also unknown if one's Google Play Store activity will automatically be mirrored on one's Google+ feed as well, or if there will be certain filters and switches that can be applied.

Google is really playing up the social aspects of Play Store even in its review and rating features. Google has improved the interface to make this communal part of the app ecosystem more prominent and is trying to make it easier for users to leave reviews or star ratings. At the same time, Play Store will be pushing apps and content highly recommended by your contacts in search lists, just in case you happen to enjoy the same things they do.

Google Play Store 4.5.10 is already rolling out to some users, but, as always, it will take some time to reach everyone in all markets.

VIA: Android Police


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