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Google unveils new Play service to replace Android Market

Google unveils new Play service to replace Android Market

March 6, 2012 | By Eric Caoili

March 6, 2012 | By Eric Caoili
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More: Smartphone/Tablet, GDC, Business/Marketing

Google has combined several of its services, including its app and game store Android Market, into a single hub called Google Play, replacing the Android Market app with a Play Store app.

The Google Play service is meant to be an integrated destination for games, applications, books, music, and movies. It will be accessible to all users on Android devices (2.2 or higher) as Google rolls out a phased over-the-air update, as well as to anyone on the web.

"We believe that with a strong brand, compelling offerings, and a seamless purchasing and consumption experience, Google Play will drive more traffic and revenue to the entire ecosystem," says Kenneth Lui from Google's Android Developer Ecosystem group.

Google Play is built on the same infrastructure as Android Market, and has automatically carried over games that were published on the old service. It also includes offerings and stores from previously separate services like Google Music and Google Books.

With the hub, users can find and install games to their Android devices from the web on the Google Play site, browse curated lists for applications, choose to automatically update apps, and more. Users can access Google Play with their existing Android Market accounts.

Google also announced on Monday that it has increased the size limit for apps from 50MB to 4GB. Developers must still submit APK files that are 50MB or smaller, but they can attach two expansion files with a max size of 2GB, which Google Play will host.

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