If you haven’t gone into the Android Market for a few days,you may have missed the notification asking you to agree to a new set of termsand conditions for something called “Google Play”. Wondering what that is, exactly? Well, it’san update to the Android Market that pulls Google’s other content sources –like books, movies and music – into a single market experience along withAndroid apps.
Google is bringing the cloud into the equation, too: inaddition to being able to store up to 20,000 songs, it also makes all of yourpurchases available to you online. So, for example, you can go to Google Playand see all of the apps you’ve purchased previously using that particularGoogle account, even if you’re on a different device…or even logged in from aweb browser on a desktop.
While you can go to Google Play directly from your mobiledevice, you may actually want to use the extra screen real estate on yournotebook or desktop to manage your content. You can pick out an app on thecomputer, and tell Google Play to push it to your device. Or pick out a book ormovie on the desktop, and it will appear in the appropriate place (say, thePlay Books app) on your mobile device if you have the sync function turned on.
As always, some are sure to have privacy concerns about this– all of your Google purchase history is now sitting there in one place, andaccessible to anyone who nabs your password. Of course, Google itself has always had access to your purchasehistory, so no additional concern there…and it’s always a good idea to have astrong password strategy to be sure that unauthorized third parties can’t getin the door to peek at or mess with your data. So, it’s probably business asusual.
So far it looks like Google has avoided pulling a Facebook,and has kept your purchases from appearing automatically on your Google Plusprofile. Just keep your fingers crossed that it stays that way. You don’t needthe world knowing you love Barry Manilow. Trust me on this.