What you need to know
- The minimum OS requirement for an app is now more transparent on the Google Play Store's mobile listings.
- A new line item for "Android OS" has been added in the bottom section of apps and games listings.
- The latest change appears to be uncalled-for since the Play Store already filters the apps you can see based on your current Android version, among other factors.
Google has silently rolled out a new feature to the Play Store that displays the minimum required Android version on mobile devices in order to install an app (via 9to5Google).
App developers will now have to bother adding another line item for "Android OS" in the "About this app" section of an app listing as a result of the latest change. This is in addition to other existing app details such as the app version, last update date, download stats, developer, release date and app permissions.
Google has long been displaying the minimum OS requirement on the web version of Play Store. However, this is the first time that this line has appeared on Android phones.
To check an app's minimum OS requirement, simply open an app listing and tap "About this app." You can then scroll down to the app info section at the bottom where you'll find the Android OS line.
However, it is an unnecessary piece of information on the app store since it already hides apps that are not supported by your device. For example, if an app is built only for Android 7 and up, you won't be able to find it on the app store if you're using a phone running Android 6.
Nonetheless, the Play Store has previously released a number of more useful features, such as the new offers tab, which makes it easier to find deals on apps, games, and entertainment in one place.
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Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.