There's a lot going on at Google Play, and we're here to help get you started
Google is slowly turning into your one-stop place to shop for all your online content. With great music, movies, books and magazines (not to mention 700,000 apps) there's a good chance something you want is there waiting for you. Because it's such a big place, things can get a little complicated.
Don't worry, though. Android Central is here to help. We've assembled a list of featured stories that should help answer all your questions and get you well on your way to discovering all the great content -- and how to best find it and get it on your Android device.
Before we get to the meat, let's talk a few minutes about Google Play and cover some basic settings. Google Play is the big Googly umbrella that covers the Android app store, Play Music, Play Books, Play Magazines and Play Movies and TV. You'll find each of these apps installed individually on your phone or tablet, along with the stand alone Google Play application where you can download and purchase apps and media. Not every service is available in every country, so you might be missing one or more of the items. That's something Google is constantly working on, and we hope all the services roll out across the globe soon.
We're going to cover each of the apps individually below, but there are a few general settings in the Google Play app you'll want to set before you get started.
Open the Google Play application on your phone or tablet, and either with the menu button if your phone has one, or the action overflow indicator (three dots in the upper right) look for the line item that says "Settings" and tap it. You'll be faced with a few things you can set, and most of them are geared towards Android applications. We'll talk about those all in turn, but for now we want to look at the portion labeled "User Controls".
These are global settings for all areas of the store, and you'll want to make sure you have them set the way you like. Under Content filtering you can select whether or not to show apps that may have adult material. Google doesn't allow porn or hate-speech in Google Play, but there are quite a few apps with subject matter you might not be comfortable seeing, or not suitable for the kids. Be sure to set this accordingly.
The next item is marked Password, and having it checked means that you'll need to enter your Google account password to make in-app purchases. This can be pretty important, especially if you let youngsters or a smart phone novice play games on your phone and they aren't aware that these can cost real money. If the box is unchecked, you can make those purchases without having to enter your credentials each time.
Once you have those settings to your liking, you're ready to tackle the Play store. Below you'll find some handy links to walk you through each portion, and some tips to get you headed in the right direction.
Posted by Alex Dobie on 24 May 2012 2:45 pm
Google Play continues to expand upon the business models available to developers and app-buyers, with today's launch of in-app subscription on its Android app store. Following on from last year's in-app purchases launch, Google Play's in-app subscriptions service provides the ability for apps to charge a monthly or yearly fee for in-app content. As you'd expect, the payment amount and renewal...
Posted by Jerry Hildenbrand on 19 May 2012 8:00 pm
acr456 asks in the Android Central forums,
Hello, I am going to factory reset my phone. However, my question is, since this is a complete reset will it also rollback to the version of Android that the EVO was launched with? For example, I know have version 2.3.5. Will it roll it all the way back to 2.1? I just want my data erased, I want to keep all my system updates including whatever...
Posted by Jerry Hildenbrand on 2 May 2012 3:14 pm
Google has announced that they will begin offering direct carrier billing for movies, music, and books in addition to Android apps in the Google Play store. This means that you can buy just about anything from the Play Store, and have the cost tacked on to your monthly cell phone bill through your carrier. It's not available everywhere, but the list of carriers that support direct billing is...
Posted by Jerry Hildenbrand on 30 Apr 2012 1:10 pm
You may recall that last week we ordered an unlocked GSM Samsung Galaxy Nexus from the Google Play store to give away. There was this gigantic forum thread and everything. Well, we fired up ye olde random number generator last night and picked a winner, and now we're gonna announce it.
Scmurphy13, enjoy your Galaxy Nexus!
Keep an eye peeled for more contests and giveaways -- we like having them...
Posted by Android Central on 27 Apr 2012 11:59 am
Good news for our friends down under, as Australia now has access to Google Play Movies, as you can see by this screen shot. There's still a pretty big empty spot there, though, and that'd be for Google Music. Will we see expansion outside the U.S. any time now? Let's hope.
Posted by Phil Nickinson on 24 Apr 2012 11:02 am
The rumors were true -- Google once again is selling unlocked smartphones on its own, with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus going for $399 in the Google Play Store.
The phone Google's offering is an unlocked pentaband GSM device, same as what many of us had imported previously. The "pentaband" part means that it'll work on AT&T and T-Mobile 3G/4G networks. And because it's unlocked, you can take it...
Posted by Phil Nickinson on 23 Apr 2012 9:32 pm
Update 2: And they're back. Crisis is averted!
Update: Google's now telling developers that it's aware of the issue. Help is on the way!
Everybody panic! Paid applications have disappeared from Google Play! Well, that's half true. They're still visible in the Android app, but trying to purchase just leads to an error. But the web portal (at least anything that's not on the front page) has been...
Posted by Richard Devine on 18 Apr 2012 9:50 pm
Notably missing from the Google Play and YouTube repertoire of content, has long been iconic studio MGM. But now, they're missing no more. MGM has become the fifth major studio to partner with Google, and over 600 titles will be making their way into the catalog. The only catch thus far -- in typical Google fashion it will only be available in the US and Canada for the time being.
Posted by Bla1ze on 12 Apr 2012 4:49 pm
Google has been working hard over the past few years to make the Google Play Store as global as possible and now, they've announced the availability of some new areas and currencies that are supported:
Android developers in those countries can now submit and sell apps in any currency they wish and subsequently receive payouts and financial data...
Posted by Phil Nickinson on 29 Mar 2012 2:25 pm
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.
Posted by Alex Dobie on 27 Mar 2012 6:58 pm
Posted by Richard Devine on 27 Mar 2012 3:51 pm
Posted by Alex Dobie on 16 Mar 2012 1:27 pm
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...
Posted by Richard Devine on 16 Mar 2012 6:56 am
Posted by Alex Dobie on 15 Mar 2012 7:04 pm
Posted by Phil Nickinson on 13 Mar 2012 8:14 am
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...
Posted by Jerry Hildenbrand on 9 Mar 2012 6:56 pm
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...
Posted by Jerry Hildenbrand on 8 Mar 2012 1:38 am
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...
Posted by Jason Harrison on 7 Mar 2012 2:07 pm
Posted by Phil Nickinson on 7 Mar 2012 2:37 pm
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!