Android

Google’s Play Store now makes it easier to find apps for your watch, tablet, TV, and car


Google is updating its Play Store to make it easier to discover and download apps across the full range of Android devices — whether that’s Wear OS watches, Android TVs, Android tablets, or vehicles fitted with Android Auto. There are three updates in total: a new device-specific search filter, new sections in the Android app focused on devices that aren’t phones, and new options to remotely install apps from your phone. 

These updates come as Google is working to improve the Android hardware ecosystem beyond phones — a focus highlighted by the company’s own efforts to release more Android hardware options, including a Google Pixel smartwatch this year and a new Google tablet in 2023. It seems that if Google itself is offering a broader range of hardware, the company wants to make it easier to install apps across a variety of devices.

The first update for the Google Play app adds new homepages for devices that aren’t phones, including watches, TVs, and cars. These are accessible from the “Other devices” tab underneath the search box, which lets you specify the exact device type. Each homepage consists of rows of recommendations. 9to5Google previously spotted the new sections while they were in testing, and they’re officially rolling out this week.

Searching for apps for non-phone devices should also get easier thanks to new search filters, which appear below the search box. You can use the filter to limit a search to just one of your devices, whether it’s a smartwatch or Android TV. This feature is also officially rolling out this week, although it, too, was previously spotted in the wild by 9to5Google.

Installing one app across multiple device types.
Image: Google

Finally, once you’ve found an Android app you want, Google’s announcement says it’s now easier to install it remotely. A promotional image shows how the same Android app can be installed across multiple different devices with a single tap. Remotely installing Wear OS apps is a feature that’s appeared in Google’s support pages since last year, and users also spotted Google testing remote Android TV app installs last November. Now, though, the remote install feature is fully available to all users.



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