Jul 13, 2011
Google has revealed the latest version of the app for the Android Market, and it brings some new features to the Market, Most immediately apparent is the app’s total redesign; gone is the rotating display of apps at the top, and here is a new panel-based design providing access to not just apps and games, but to books and movies as well. Through the Google Books app and new Videos app, users can now buy books from the Market, and rent movies. Both services will offer the ability to instantly stream the content to users’ devices as purchases are linked to users’ Google Accounts. As well, there is the option to download them to the phone for offline viewing. These features will be available in the US, though they may come to some other countries in the future.
For apps and games, the new Android Market will provide new top lists, including a “Top Grossing” list, similar to the iOS App Store. This new chart could help push Android Market’s built-in in-app purchase mechanism as apps that use it would be eligible to appear on this list, as opposed to 3rd party IAP mechanisms. This should also help free to play games and similar apps with in-app purchases have some more visibility on the store.
The new Android Market will not be available to all users, as right now it only supports Android 2.2 and up devices. Considering that a lot of phones are still stuck on 2.1 and below, now may be the time for those users to start yelling at their carrier and manufacturers, or to start looking into rooting and custom roms for their phone. Every Android problem has a solution, after all. The new Android Market app will be automatically updating on users’ devices over the next couple of weeks, and will be available internationally, with Books and Videos support enabled for US users. The new Videos app is available from the Market for compatible devices.