Google Play Store to soon feature a new space for apps to showcase content-based experiences: Report

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Google is reportedly working on a new feature that will help developers showcase their apps and their capabilities in a new location. The tech giant is said to have shared its plans with third-party app developers at the Google I/O 2024 event during a session. This new feature will create a new surface where users can view and experience content from apps. The company reportedly believes this could increase engagement and help users return to forgotten apps.

According to a TechCrunch report, Google Play’s General Manager of Apps Mekka Okereke explained this new approach to a select group of app developers during its event. Okereke reportedly said, “This new surface will automatically organize the best and most popular content from the apps users already have installed on their Android phones, and it enables cross-app continuity journeys for nearly every app category.” He further explained that this experience will be full-screen content that can be launched with a single tap and will display immersive experiences tailored to the most integral content from installed apps.

Breaking it down, this new feature appears either within the Google Play Store or as a location on users’ home screen (similar to Google Discover which is present on the left side of the home screen on some Android smartphones). In these spaces, the tech giant will showcase content from various apps and create immersive experiences. The report highlights an example where users could see a pair of white sneakers and click on it to go straight to the app and make a purchase.

Notably, this is not an App Discovery feature as it is designed for apps that the user already has installed on their device, but has not interacted with them for some time. The purpose of immersive content is to remind them what they’re missing and lure them back to the app. Although Google hasn’t explained how exactly it plans to include this feature, the description makes it seem like an interactive ad, which many users may not like.

At the moment, this feature is limited to only a few developers with whom Google is partnering. They will reportedly be given access to its Engage SDK toolkit to create content-based experiences, which will then be showcased by the Android maker. Users probably won’t get this feature until later this year. According to the report, some of the popular app developers partnering with Google include Spotify, Prime Video, Reddit, Uber Eats, YouTube, McDonald’s, Google Maps, and more.


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