06
Mar
gplay_logo_g

Goodbye, Android Market, hello, Google Play. Just moments ago, Google let loose the re-branded Android content hub. What's new? Actually, not all that much (yet).

The change in name is largely an exercise in product consolidation. Google Books, Google Music, Google Movies, and the Android Market are all now under the "Google Play" banner, in an attempt to bring all of Google's content services to one place.

gplay

Aside from the UI refresh, there's really nothing new going on so far as we can tell. Google plans to roll out an updated version of the Market (Play) to Android 2.2+ devices in the coming days, as well as to discontinue the Market branding. The move makes sense for Google, as the company has increasingly become a content powerhouse thanks to the rapid adoption of Android around the world.

And here's a look at apps integration on Google Play:

Google's real goal here seems to be to give the impression that no matter where you go, or what device you're on, that the Google Play experience is consistent throughout. Watching movies, listen to music, or read eBooks on your phone, tablet, or desktop computer. These features aren't new, but Google definitely hasn't done a great job of advertising them to mainstream consumers. I think I smell a marketing campaign.

The company has re-branded various divisions, as well: it's now Play Books, Play Movies, Play Music, and Play (for the app store portion). Take a look at the new app icons, which have actually been split up into various shortcuts depending on content:

google-play-icons

And let's face it, the Market was kind of a boring name. But I'm not sure Play is a whole lot better. The logo's nicer, though. Check out the Google Play web store now.

Google Play

David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • http://GPlus.to/Abhisshek Abhisshek

    i dont like the new logo . not much colorful . kinda lame color

    • http://www.instdesign.com MACC

      I actually think it's great. About time Google decided to distance themselves from those basic colors they use on every single logo design. It was fun for a while and it did bring a sense of unity to their products but I think it's time to move on and start experimenting with the full spectrum. I think the "Google" logo in typographic form like it was used here is more than enough to brand their individual apps :)

  • Duffin

    I suppose it also helps to get away from Apple's lawsuits. If it's no longer called the "Market", they can't really go after them for the name. Personally, I'm still calling it the Android Market.

    • http://www.lettersfromdave.com daveloft

      why would apple go after them for Market? It's Apple appstore, nothing like Market.

      I think it's because you can enjoy books, movies and music without an Android device.

      • Duffin

        When as logic ever stopped them? Market is a synonym of Store. It just removed that option if they don't refer to it as something resembling the word "Store"

        • http://gthing.net sam

          You're thinking of Amazon. Apple went after Amazon for using "app store."

        • Luly

          Apple didn't patent the word "Market" LOL. You got it mixed up with Amazon's App Store.

          And I LOVE the new design!

    • Jon Garrett

      +1

      but rather than playing with the name Id just like to see them improve the market.

      I cant believe what a mess it is. like why there is no way to filter apps. and why, oh why is there no "whats new" tab so I can see the newest apps.

  • Leif

    I like the market and think the new page they launched is pretty good and detailed to highlight it's features. After the ICS launch they really seem to concentrate a bit more on the consumer as well as the developer experience.
    First the design guidelines, then the tons of hangouts with developers which also resulted in the improvement of the statistics for developers and now this new name with an improved layout. I think this is just the beginning of a new market.

  • Joel

    just updated their music and books apps with name changes as well.

  • EDD

    Google, things like this are slightly annoying!

  • Adam Lewis

    :O

    I don't like change!

  • http://plus.psylink.net Scott Psylink Rager

    am I the only one that thinks playstation when seeing "Play Store"?

    • David Ruddock

      Nope, was my first thought, too!

    • Simon Belmont

      Me three. I find the new branding to be kind of infantile too. :(

      I liked the old Android Market icon, but I guess I am complaining about a minor thing. Not much will change, it seems. ;)

      • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com Cody Toombs

        I'm fairly indifferent to the store and movies icons but I quite like the changes to the books and music icons...My biggest complaint is that the store icon doesn't really fit in with the other 3 (not that it needs to, it serves a different purpose and use case than the other 3).

        • Simon Belmont

          I guess it's supposed to look like a "PLAY" button. Like you see on a CD player or DVD player. ;)

          The colors apparently represent the different colors of the tabs of the services that the Google Play Store is offering. It makes sense, per se, but I just liked the old Andy the Android shopping bag icon better. :)

  • Tkun

    Play Books? Wtf? I personally prefer the Android Market name scheme, but I think I'll warm up to this new naming convention eventually.

    • zach

      Aren't Play Books owned by RIM?

  • erek

    NOW would be the time to have gift cards to the Market..er..Play Store available.

  • Sorian

    I don't get why they changed the name, you could do everything in "Market" like you can do in "Play". Are they doing to change the name on the Market App on the phones to reflect this, somehow.

    • erek

      Yea they are changing the name. Look at the video. It appears a new icon and app name on phones is coming

    • Luly

      Coz "Market" is not a name. Just like gas station, shopping mall, school, I think you get the idea.

  • Simon Belmont

    Heh. Google Play Books.

    Sounds like a BlackBerry tablet to me. I wonder how long before RIM notices.

  • Tomáš Dvořák

    For us in EU. Its Android Market with new name :D no books no movies no music :D

    • Mark Arpon

      It's kind of sad actually... I hope it will change soon though!

    • Gloria

      Exactly.. it's just the usual market with a non-fitting dull name.
      Sad. :(
      I like the icon though.

  • heavyD

    I dont like the apps witch is on discount :|

  • Duuuuude

    APK or it didn't happen. ;)

  • Zachary Jacob Zblewski

    Google should merge the Chrome Store with Google Play so I can get my Android Apps and Chrome Apps in the same place.

    • JK

       +1 for this, I'm surprised they didn't do that to start with.

  • Jonathan

    Meh i dont care for the PLAY name is way too casual.

    How do you talk about google play and not make it sound like its all about games and fun.

    idk there just ignoring the HUGE professional market out there.

    • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com Cody Toombs

      Wouldn't disagree with you at all. They are ignoring, and possibly even pushing away the professional market a bit (but not necessarily, I'll come back to that). The thing that deserves mentioning is that everybody else has done the same thing; iOS has always been toy-like, Windows Phone has been heavily criticized for focusing on XBox Live and using a very non-professional style, and even the Blackberry Playbook released without an email client and still today doesn't even integrate with the majority of BB Services. Every major player has turned their backs on the professional market...not saying it's right, just saying it's not different.

      Regarding the professional market though, there is one thing that distinguishes Android; it doesn't require the market. Side-loading is supported, corporations can order/produce their own roms, and the branding can be completely dismissed. Of course I'm talking about mass corporate-issued situations (think hospitals, factory floors, etc.) and not referring to lawyers, managers, etc...but I think those people are already used to this kinda thing and they are far less likely to be bothered by or judged based on branding that will soon be familiar to 25% of the populace.

      • Jonathan

        Your right, apple seems to have set the standard of this. And every company you mentioned is following,

        I work in IT and the company I work for is medium in size 100-150 employees. Just a couple weeks ago we bought 50 ipad 2s. The admin and I tried to convince them that android is a better alternative but they wouldn't hear anything we said.

        But too the point, as far as I see it the strategy is just to go after consumers and maybe companies will follow

        • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com Cody Toombs

          You said it great, and I think companies have to follow. In the Blackberry vs. Windows Mobile days the devices catered to companies and it's pretty clear that didn't work out very well. A big part of the change is that a ton of professionals, especially lawyers, have been pushing their firms to switch over to iPhones or Android and away from Blackberry.

          I do have a theory though...I think that the release of Windows 8 is going to change the landscape again. With Windows 8 hitting tablets and phones shortly after, there's going to be a sudden demand for Android and iOS to have the two key features they will be missing, a better multitasking experience (Cornerstone could solve that on Android) and better integration with corporate networks (in other words, the IT guys need to be able to fully manage them). Companies have been on the back burner because they tend to be slow to adopt new tech/gadgets, but they are going to start making demands now.

  • Jonathan

    Yeah we'll have to wait and see about win 8.
    You make a lot of good points.

    As for multitasking I bought onskreen for my Xoom and let me tell you it's been amazing. What multitasking on a tablet should be. And something like cornerstone could be the future. Google could pick it up since its open source and integrate it, that would be very cool.

    Your totally right tho, apple marketing and perception has driven there sales for a while. That's why our IT department was unable to convince the company to use anything besides apple.

  • Himmat S.

    I'm so sad that this is only for the US. In Malaysia, I am basically taken to the same website with the same old interface, except that the logo has changed from Android Market to Google Play.

  • Mike

    "Is there anything actually different about it, now that it's called Google Play? The answer to this is pretty much a "no.""

    Do people even research before writing? For example, far from "nothing," the new terms REQUIRE me to allow Google to update all of its apps AUTOMATICALLY. Manual updates, or choosing not to update, Google apps is no longer an option.

    From the Google Play Terms of Service:

    "5.1 Products originating from Google may communicate with Google servers from time to time to check for available updates to the Products, such as bug fixes, patches, enhanced functions, missing plug-ins and new versions (collectively, "Updates"). By installing these Products, you agree to such automatically requested and received Updates. "

    • Joe Mama

      umm, "do people even research before writing?" maybe u should do as u preach...auto-update is indeed an option. check it.

  • Mike

    I love Google and Android, and I understand not much has changed but the name, but this is possibly the worst move Google has ever made, personally and marketing-wise.

  • Syd

    Pretty annoying little change that does nothing since everything was already integrated into the website and market app.

    Also when this change does happen to the market app itself I plan to keep the old market icon as its already awesome. Personally I don't like the name for the other apps and will most likely rename them back to what is was...

    Trivial stuff really :/

  • js

    Did anyone at Google do any "Market" research on this? Or are they too busy playing?

  • Freak4Dell

    Not liking this. In the end, it's a trivial change, but I didn't see anything wrong with the Market name. In fact, calling it the Android Market was much better than calling it an AppStore. Market was a more broad term, meaning they could sell more than apps in there later if they wanted to, which they did.

    Nothing sounded out of place under the Market umbrella, but a lot sounds out of place under the Play umbrella. Apps are now cast under this light that they're all fun and games, yet there are thousands and thousands of productivity and professional apps. As mentioned earlier by other commenters, Google basically forgot about the professional market as far as apps are concerned. Also, the word play and books have nothing to do with each other. You don't play books (well, audiobooks, I suppose), and you don't play with them. You read them. I wouldn't go to a toy store to buy a book.

    Overall, it just doesn't sit right with me. Seems like a pretty stupid marketing move, and if anything, it should have gone the other way around, from Play to Market (if Play had existed before Market, that is).

  • Stuart

    You'd think that as Android is 'quite' popular outside the US, Google would have waited until the rest of us had access to Music and Movies... Showing us how great it is that we can store a huge quantity of music is not really a sensible marketing move

    • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com Cody Toombs

      I keep seeing this point being made by everybody outside the USA...I have to ask, honestly, if it weren't for following news sites like this one, how much exposure/marketing would you have that would have told you all of this stuff? From what I've read in the past, I thought you guys didn't see links on the market pages or the various banners on the market scroller, and I know you can't grab the apps directly from the market.

      Unless you're seeing that marketing, Google isn't exactly flaunting it at you and it's not their fault that their marketing (which is almost entirely internet based) leaks outside of the intended boundaries because of news sites. It sucks that they haven't got this stuff going international yet (probably still legal issues), but I don't think they are doing this just to annoy people outside of the US.

  • Dave

    I noticed that the Android Market icon disappeared from my screen. I looked on all 7 "desktops", but it wasn't there. When I finally realized that it's called Google Play now, I added that "widget" to my screen. Unfortunately, it's twice as tall and twice as wide as a normal icon, AND it has banner ads, trying to sell me apps that I don't want.

    How can I make it small again and get rid of the banner ads?

    • http://codytoombs.wordpress.com Cody Toombs

      Why are you adding the widget instead of the app icon? I can't stand the widget but the icon is decent (albeit, kinda clashy with by background now).

      Suddenly, I kinda want to rant about the widget though. I don't understand why they have the widget. I get that it's showing what's featured, but I don't imagine most users want to effectively put banner ads on their screen if they don't have to (at least, not when they flash by that fast). Instead, they should have a widget that shows me what app updates I have waiting for me, that would actually be useful and relevant to me.

  • googlegetsworseveryday

    It just fucking annoying, oh everyone learn a new gui. ffs how do i delete an app? oh have to learn some new menus.
    google play ? what am i five years old?

    • http://Not.Telling/ Kr0nZ

      Whats to learn?
      Maybe for the learning impaired, or those with the IQ less than 60, it will take some getting use to.

      Im guessing your in the latter group?

  • Web Design Development Service

     Don't like this applications...........

  • ver

    Its because of shit like this that most people switch to pirating shit. At least their GUI isn't as degrading and redundant as this.