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Google Play Movies & TV

Google Play Movies & TV picks up account switcher, new navigation drawer and improved timeline scrubbing

Design falls in line with other recent Google apps while adding a few new features Wednesdays are turning in to "Google app update" days, and the second one of today (behind Keep) is Google Play Movies & TV. The update is making the same interface changes here as we have seen on other recent...
Google Play Activity page

See all of your ratings and +1s in Google Play on the web

A new menu item is showing up for some users in the Play Store on the web, giving you a look at all of your +1 and comment activity in the store. This reflects a change that was added to the Play Store on Android back in December, letting you have a broad look at all of your Play Store engagement...
Nexus 5 camera

Android camera app reportedly getting portrait and effects improvements through Play Store

To be updated independently of Android, gaining custom filter support The Android camera app will soon be split off into the Google Play Store and is looking to get an update with a refreshed UI and new effects. Manufacturers have put a lot of effort into expanding the capabilities of their...

Google Play Store - Top Articles

Nexus 5 camera

Android camera app reportedly getting portrait and effects improvements through Play Store

To be updated independently of Android, gaining custom filter support The Android camera app will soon be split off into the Google Play Store and is looking to get an update with a refreshed UI and new effects. Manufacturers have put a lot of effort into expanding the capabilities of their...
Google Play

UK closes tax loophole on digital downloads, Google Play prices likely to increase

New rules see standard VAT of 20% to be paid from January 1 2015 Buried within the recent Budget, it seems that UK Chancellor, George Osborne, has announced that digital content downloads will pay tax based on the country they are sold in. In other words all content from Google Play, Amazon,...
Android Central

Hangouts 2.0 now rolling out with SMS support

New version lets you use Google's IM app to send and receive texts As promised at last week's Google+ event, the new version of Hangouts capable of sending and receiving text messages is now rolling out through Google Play. The update to brings things up to speed with the version of Hangouts on...
Google fixes Heartbleed

Google updates back-end in light of Heartbleed vulnerability

If you've been online at some point in the last 36 hours, chances are you've heard of 'Heartbleed', a flaw in OpenSSL that has exposed data to theft on approximately 2/3 of servers in use around the globe over the past two years. It's not known how bad the damage may be, but the revelation of the...
Sense 6 apps

HTC Sense 6 apps hit Google Play ahead of new HTC One launch

BlinkFeed, HTC Service Pack and SenseTV listed on Google Play, complete with screenshots We're just hours away from the expected arrival of the new HTC One (M8), and we're starting to see signs of the final preparations being made for the phone's launch. HTC has this morning released three new...
Google Play Store 4.6.16

Google Play Store 4.6.16 now rolling out with new password options, batch app installing

A few interface and wording changes make the app a little more friendly A new version of the Google Play Store is rolling out to a wide number of people this week, bringing with it a few new options in the settings and some visual tweaks that make the whole app run a bit smoother. Nothing will...
Yeezus

Kanye West's 'Yeezus' leads Google's holiday deals

As is prone to happen this time of year, Google's got a bunch of holiday deals in order on Google Play. The savings spans across just about every category, from Kanye West's "Yeezus" album free for a limited time. The Star Wars: Tiny Death Star game has an exclusive  Google Play bundle available,...
Galaxy Note 3

Samsung offering U.S. Galaxy Note 3 owners $50 Google Play credit

If you've got a U.S. Samsung Galaxy Note 3, Samsung's running a promotion until Jan. 6 that'll allow you to claim $50 of free Google Play credit. Simply hit up the promotion site, enter your details — including phone number, address, email and IMEI — and you'll be able to score $50 credit to use...
Google Play Movies

Google Play Movies comes to dozens of new countries, Play Music expands to 4 more

63 countries now have Google Play Movies, with 25 now having Play Music as well Well it turns out Google has been busy signing deals to expand Google Play Movies, as the content choice has just expanded to 38 new countries around the world today. And the new countries truly are around the entire...
Moto G Google Play edition

Moto G Google Play edition now on sale for $179

Same great phone at a budget price, with a slightly different take on software In yet another quiet release, Google has just put up the Moto G Google Play edition for sale at $179 for the 8GB model. That mirrors the price that Motorola has been selling it directly, but this version will follow...

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Here's a cool little feature Google's added to the Android Developer Console: You can now add managers to the account. That way, the account holder (say, Mobile Nations) can grant someone (say, me) access to the company's Android apps in Google Play without having to hand over the keys to the castle in the form of the account password. A wise move from the folks in Mountain View.

More: Google Developer Blog

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If you're having trouble accessing paid apps on your Google Play account, or seeing cryptic server errors when trying to browse for apps, you're not alone. We've been getting reports, some as old as three days ago about errors where paid apps aren't shown as purchased, both on the phone and on the web, as well as the RPC (Remote Procedure Call) error you see above. 

We're pretty certain it's some sort of server glitch, and your paid apps are safe and sound in the Googleplex basement, but it sure is annoying -- I just got myself a Transformer Prime and want to set it up! We've pinged Google, and we'll let you know what they have to say when they get back with us.

Update: And things are better for us again, but we're still hearing a bunch of you are having issues. Hang in there.

Thanks, Johann!

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The Google Movies Google Play Movies app for Android has been updated with a compatibility fixes for some Honeycomb tablets. Today's update fixes an issue which could cause the app to crash on certain devices, including Sony's Tablet S and Archos' 80 G9 tablets. If you've affected by random crashes in the Play Movies app, you'll want to grab the update now from the Google Play Store.

Google Movies became Google Play Movies a few weeks ago, as part of Google's rebranding of all its content delivery services. Alongside Play Movies, Google Music became Google Play Music, Google Books became Google Play Books, and so on. You get the idea. Aside from some shiny new app icons, everything works just as it did before.

We've got the usual web links and QR code for the Google Play Movies app after the break.

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How is it the old saying goes -- the best things come to those who wait? The wait for the Harry Potter eBook series to go on sale has certainly been long. Originally we were expecting them back in October. But, for whatever reason that date slipped, and slipped, and now finally today is the day. The eBook store over on the Pottermore site has finally gone live, for Muggles across the world to get their electronic fix. 

As previously reported, the books are available to read in your Google Play Books application, right on your Android device. In fact, you can also purchase and read them in your Kindle application, right on your Android device. The only drawback remains, that you can only actually purchase anything from the Pottermore website. So how do you retrieve your fix of Hogwarts from there? Stick around, we've got you covered. 

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Looks like Google is getting more serious about their Google Play Store advertising. If you're browsing pages through Google you'll now start to see a Google Play Store link in the toolbar. Interestingly enough though it's not appearing on Google's homepage, only on the various other links such as Google+, Documents, Maps and Gmail will you see the new advertising. Though, one does have to wonder -- is it advertising or is that some folks are still confused over the switch?

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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Reports have emerged over the past couple of weeks that a significant number of European Android developers have yet to receive their payment for sales during February 2012. And today, Google has today informed affected developers that payment has been initiated, and that the money should start appearing in their bank accounts within three working days.

A statement for European devs on the Google Play developer console reads --

February 2012 Payout Delays
We're aware of reports from some European developers that they have yet to receive their March 2012 payout for February 2012 sales. Please rest assured that we are aware of this issue and have worked to resolve it. The payout has been initiated on 15 March 2012. However, it may take up to three additional business days to register the payout in your bank account. We apologize for any inconvenience you may have experienced and appreciate your understanding.

Google has sent a similar message to affected developers by email, apologizing for the late payment and advising them to allow three working days for their banks to process the payment.

No explanation was offered as to why the payments were so late, but we imagine some kind of technical glitch was to blame, possibly relating to the switch-over from Android Market to the new Google Play Store. Hopefully this marks the end of a frustrating couple of weeks for European Android developers.

Thanks, Tom!

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An update is beginning to push out to the Android Market Google Play Store bumping it to build number 3.5.15. With it comes a change in the UI to the "My Apps" area, and some handy new features built into application reviews that bring it more into line with the desktop version. For us outside North America we also seem to have been renamed from "Play Shop" to the much better sounding "Play Store." 

The change to the "My Apps" area is the most obvious change brought with this latest update. Gone is the single -- and incredibly long in some cases -- list of old, and in comes a new tabbed interface in the same vein as the main store.  The installed tab is now split into two parts, the updates still showing at the top but the remainder are now labelled as "up to date" below. 

Swipe left and we now get the "All" tab. Handily this contains all the applications you've ever installed. Gone are the days of scrolling all the way to the bottom of your installed apps list to find your not installed paid apps selection. This also contains all the free applications you installed before but don't have currently. Everything is here. This tab also has a handy dropdown box at the top listing all your Google accounts, providing a much smoother and easier way of switching without having to go into the menus. 

Heading out into the main store, further changes can be found in the app reviews. Now the device on which the app on the device which the reviewer was using. Reviews can also be filtered by "most helpful first" or by "newest first," and also for the latest version of the app and for your type of device only. This last one could be particularly handy for anyone running Ice Cream Sandwich, since we still seem to have compatibility issues with some applications. 

One final thing to note. When I first started trying to download apps after the update, everything kept flashing up with "Error 941." Force stopping the app, clearing cache and starting again seemed to do the trick. Not great, but seemed to fix the issue at least. 

For a few screenshots hit the break. If you find any other features worth noting, shout out in the comments below.

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EA Sports has released two long-awaited titles on Google Play in Europe and North America today -- FIFA (Soccer) 12 and NBA Jam.

FIFA 12 is the latest in the long-running soccer football franchise, and launched on games consoles and iOS last October. The Android version originally launched exclusively on the Xperia Play last December, carrying Sony's "optimized for Xperia Play" branding. Now EA's opened things up to anyone with $5 (£4.15 in the UK) to spare and an Android 2.1+ device.

Likewise, NBA Jam is another classic franchise which has finally made its way across to Google's app store. EA promises arcade basketball action featuring all 30 NBA teams, including head-to-head multiplayer over Wifi or Bluetooth. NBA Jam is priced at $5 in North America, or £3 in Europe.

We've got Google Play links for both titles after the break.

 

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Admittedly we're not all that versed on the ins and outs of how Google pays developers for apps purchased from the Android Market Google Play. But one thing we do know is an angry mob (editors are particularly good at spotting them), and one appears to be growing in the Google Checkout Merchant forums. In a nearly week-old thread with more that 100 posts, it seems a growing number of European devs have yet to receive payment for February. Almost worse is that they apparently aren't getting much in the way of explanation.

Developers are the lifeblood of any platform. (Perhaps you've heard.) Let's hope this gets straightened out soonest.

Source: Google Product Forums

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Ask anyone who has a Logitech Revue, and they'll tell you it can be a temperamental son-of-a-biscuit every now and then. Most of us still love the Google TV experience, but owning a Revue means you'll need to get familiar with work-arounds. Here's a simple one to get the Google play update running on your Revue if you got stuck in the "update available/updating" loop:

Pull the plug for 10 seconds.

In fact, pulling the plug and counting to 10 before you re-power your Revue solves a lot of problems. I found myself with the Market update waiting, and nothing I could do would fix it until I just powered the whole damn thing down. When it came back, I had the shiny new Google play service ready and waiting. If it would only work for Hulu plus...

Source: Android Central forums

Hat tip to ryanfoley613 for reminding us of the trick!

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The Google Play Store has been updated to Version 3.4.7. We repeat: The Google Play Store has been updated to Verison 3.4.7. You folks on Motorola phones can now hit that secondary store link in your app drawer without fear of failure.

That is all.

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We've had a couple of days to settle in (and debate) the new Google Play branding that covers the old Android Market, Google Book, Google Music, and Google Movies content stores. We've also been enjoying the sales in effect on apps and digital media (get Flick Golf Extreme from Google Play for a quarter before it's too late!) and filling our devices with content. But the name is a bit of a change.

We get it -- Google wanted to provide a unified name and look across all their digital content stores for Android, and a big re-branding sure got everyone's attention. But like all things when they change, there are plenty of skeptics. I'll admit saying download from Google Play seems a bit odd, but I'll get used to it soon enough. Of course what's done is done, but we're still allowed to say what we think of it, and that's what we're about to do. Sound off in the poll and comments and tell us what you think of the new Google Play moniker.

 

Is "Google Play" a good look for Google?

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Not a huge update, we suppose, but the Google Play branding has made its way into a new version of what previous was Google Music Manager. Guess now it's Google Play Music Manager? Snag the latest version at the link below.

Download: Google Play Music Manager; Thanks, Chris!

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RIP Android Market.

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We've gotten more than a few e-mails today from folks wondering where the heck their Android Market app has gone and run off to. (Don't laugh, it's perfectly OK to take a day off from obsessing over Android news.)

If you missed the news yesterday, the Android Market is now the Google Play Store. Or, rather, everything that was in the Android Market is now a part of Google Play, and you get to it all through the Play Store. Or something like that. We're still trying to decide exactly how to phrase all this without having to take a second breath.

Anyhoo. Just look for the Play Store icon you see above. Same goes for Google Books, and Google Movies. And Google Music. And Play Books. And Play Movies. And Play Music. Just the same, only different.

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The new Google Play Store has started rolling out to Android phones, tablets and Google TV's over the air, following Google's announcement earlier today. The Play Store (or Play Shop in the UK) replaces the Android Market, and unites all of Google's content delivery platforms under one single brand. Essentially, you can buy music, apps, books and movies just you've always been able to do, only now the naming scheme is a little more coherent. The icon may be different, but the app works just the same.

If you want to speed up the update process, the usual trick involving force-closing Market, clearing data, uninstalling updates and then loading up the app again seems to work.

The arrival of Google Play brings to a close the era of the Android Market, which launched way back in October 2008, shortly after the original Android smartphone, the T-Mobile G1. Back then, this is what it looked like. We've come a long way.

So farewell, Android Market. If you've already noticed the Play Store on your device, be sure to shout out in the comments. We've got pics of the new Play Store on Google TV after the break.

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Above are two sets of branding standards, one old, one new. It's pretty obvious to tell which is which. On top, the now-defunct "Available in Android Market" badge you might have seen on any number of Android app developers' websites. Beneath is the new Google Play branding, which either denotes an "Android app on Google play" or tells you to "Get it on Google Play."

For the moment, we'll forgive the fact that Google Play and the branding apparently have decided to diverge when it comes to proper capitalization. (We're going to stick with Google Play, not Google play.)

And we're not going to weigh in on the new triangle logo. Either you love it or you don't. And all the polls in the world won't change anything -- Google Play and the triangle logo will still be there in the morning.

But we are a little concerned about how this new branding takes Android out of play, at least visually. The Android green (#A4C639, if you didn't know) certainly is recognizable after all these years. Same goes for the Bugdroid logo. Now we've got the new triangle logo, none of the Android green, and no happy Bugdroid showing you the way.

Is this an insurmountable problem for developers and marketing firms? Probably not. It's doubtful you'll see the Bugdroid or Android green disappear from boxes or signage anytime soon. But it is an interesting move by Google. And it begs this question:

Where will we see the triangle logo next? 

More: Android brand guidelines

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We could tell something was up when a bunch of leading applications suddenly appeared on the Android Market for just 49 cents. And now we know why -- Google is celebrating the launch of its new Google Play content portal by offering a 25 leading Android apps for 49 cents each (49p in the UK). There also seems to be a new daily "Play of the Day" promotion running, in which one app has its price slashed to just 25 cents -- or 20p if you're in the UK.

The first Play of the Day is Where's My Water, and the top 25, 49-cent apps include top-tier games and programs like World of Goo, Osmos HD, SoundHound, Dead Space and SwiftKey X. There's a lot of great stuff on there that usually sells for a much higher price, so if you're after a few new games or apps, hit the source link to browse through the top 25.

Source: Google Play

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The ink is hardly dry on the new Google Play signage, and newly rebranded Google Play apps are already starting to drop into the Android Market Google Play Store Android apps section. (See, isn't that easier to say?)

Google's Music, Videos and Books apps will update and rebrand themselves to Play Music, Play Movies and Play Books, if you're running Android 2.2 and above, and if you've already got them in your country of residence. (Paid apps are available in these countries, music in the U.S. only, movies in the U.S., UK, Canada and Japan, and books in the U.S., UK, Canada and Australia.)

The Android Market will update itself to the Google Play Store at some point.

More: Google Play FAQ

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Google's content portal for Android apps, music, books and video content has been consolidated under a new name -- Google Play. Google Play which is now live on the web at play.google.com, will replace the old Android Market, Google Music, Google Books and Videos service, giving users  a clear one-stop location for content.

The way you buy music, apps and other content from Google through the web, or your phone or tablet won't change, but the branding behind the places where you get your content will. Instead of heading several differently-named stores for each type of content, it'll all be available under the Google Play portal.

Android (2.2+) users with the old Android Market app installed will soon see it updated to Play Store, while Google's Music, Movies and Books apps for Android will be updated to incorporate the new Play branding.

So it's an important step for Google as a content provider, existing users shouldn't notice too many changes in the way app, music and video purchasing works. You can still rent a movie once and watch it on YouTube, your phone or your tablet. And you can still send apps to your phone from Play, just as you could with the Android Market.

We've got a brief introductory video after the break. Check back later for a more extensive walkthrough.

More: Google Play Q&A

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