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Google Play Store

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[Update: Fix now available] Google Play Store app licensing bug is putting developers in a horrible spot

Creating (and maintaining) a great app can require a ton of work, so we're happy to compensate developers for all that effort by shelling over a few bucks for their content in the Play Store. But while many app-makers rely on this income stream, a new bug that's popped up in a recent Play Store update threatens to toss a wrench in the works, interfering with how apps can verify paid licenses.

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[Update: Going live] Google One app arrives on the Play Store, but the service isn't live just yet [APK Download]

Google recently announced that it was replacing its current non G-Suite Google Drive storage plans with a new pricing structure called Google One. All your stuff will stay in Drive and other Google products as before, but you might get to pay slightly less depending on how much space you need. Google One now has an app in the Play Store, but it won't do anything until the service goes live sometime in the next couple of months.

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Update Notes for YouTube, YouTube Music, Play Store, Play Books, and Google Earth (May 19, 2018)

Every week, I examine somewhere in the neighborhood of a hundred app updates while looking for changes. The most interesting things turn into APK Teardowns or Download posts. Many of the remaining updates are unremarkable, amounting to a few bug fixes, routine updates to libraries, or even just pixel-level adjustments to layouts and images. However, there are usually a few updates that land somewhere in between. I don't want to spam readers with dozens of short posts, but I hate to ignore things that people might want to know about, so I'm going to wrap up the leftovers for a little weekend reading and call it Update Notes.

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Your Google Play Store review edit history is now visible to the public

App reviews in the Play Store can sometimes be a quite useful resource. Like pretty much any platform for commentary online, you've got to have a discerning eye in order to sort the genuinely useful information from all manner of fanboi rants or misdirected attempts for customer service, but it's still an asset plenty of us turn to time and time again. If you contribute reviews of your own, though, you may want to start being a little more thoughtful about what you say, as now other users can see all your old edits, even after you update your review.

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Google Play narrows consumer spending gap versus iOS App Store in Q1 2018

Despite Android's considerably larger install base, on average, users spend more money on the iOS App Store than they do Google Play. According to a report from app market data analysis firm App Annie, though, the gap has narrowed. Consumer spending on apps from Google Play grew by 25 percent year over year in the first quarter of 2018, compared to a year-over-year growth of 20 percent on the iOS App Store during the same period.

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Some interesting stats about Google Play Store vs. Apple App Store apps and development

We don't usually cover infographics and comparisons on Android Police - most are biased, pointless, or without much credibility - but this latest data set from appfigures made us stop and do a double-take because it presented interesting stats from a rather reputable app analytics company.

appfigures' report looked at 10 different questions regarding the Play Store and App Store and tried to answer them with stats pulled from its Explorer app research tool. The answers are all very interesting in their own right, but a few of them caught our attention. First of all, as shown in the graph at the top of the page, it's clear that more apps are going cross-platform from iOS to Android than the other way around.

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Play Store site redesign now rolling out to everyone

Earlier this month, Google began testing a new design for the Play Store's website. While the larger screenshots and dedicated review pages were much-needed changes, there were a few annoying regressions. Google switched image formats (from WebP to PNG/JPEG), causing screenshots to load slower, and navigating through the site was more difficult.

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Google users in Europe now have 14-day refund window for services purchased through Play Store

With as many apps as there are in existence, when you download enough you're bound to run into a stinker or two (or three, or four). And understandably, when an app just doesn't live up to your expectations, you're going to want a refund. While you can get a refund for things bought through the Google Play Store, how that process works wasn't exactly super intuitive all along, and over the years we slowly saw Google formalize its refund policies. Today we're witnessing the latest change, as Google reforms those policies for users living in the European Economic Area.

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Google seems to have pulled back the web Play Store redesign (thank goodness!)

A couple of weeks ago, Google started rolling out a new Play Store redesign on the web. On the face of it, it looked a little cleaner, but try to use it for one minute and you'd hate everything about it. Now it appears that Google has pulled it back. None of us can get the new design to show up again, regardless of how many listings and browsers and devices we try on; we're all back to the previous Play Store look on the web.

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