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Google Play Store set for Material redesign

Tom Morgan
14 Jul 2014
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Material design set to roll out to the Play Store soon, brings Android's marketplace up to date with Android L

Google is apparently preparing to roll out a radical new redesign for the Android Play Store, in order to update the digital marketplace in time for the release of Android L later in the year. With a greater focus on images and influenced by the company's Material Design concept, the updated Play Store looks set to be a major departure on both smartphones and tablets.

Leaked images, originally posted by Android Police, show a work-in-progress version of the Play Store app with multiple changes, including a greater emphasis on colour and hero images prominently placed above text. Games and Apps are able to use a promotional video in place of a hero image, while books and magazines can feature an expanded header to account for portrait-oriented covers that wouldn't otherwise fill the screen. Films and TV shows can use trailers in place of an image.

The work-in-progress app has less visible information than the single pre-release screenshot revealed last month at a Google I/O developer session, but there's now a lot more room for developers to add descriptions or update details. There's more white space by default and on a phone the content description box expands to fill the screen. Reviews are now more colourful, matching the current web layout, and Google has also changed fonts and icons throughout the app.

The button for sharing content has been moved from the menu bar to below the reviews section, and it appears Google is removing individual users from the list of Google+ +1s in order to free up space at the bottom of the page.  

It's currently unknown whether Google plans to wait until the Autumn release of Android L to launch the updated Play Store, or if it will roll it out to smartphone and tablet owners any earlier. Now that the Play Store is able to update itself independently of the operating system there's no reason Android fans should have to wait to try out the new version, although the company may want to hold off all apps with Material updates until Android L for greater impact.

We'll just have to wait until later in the year to get our first official look at the redesigned Play Store.

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