The Google Play Store is notorious for making it difficult to find apps optimized for devices other than phones—you’ve often had to guess and hope for the best. It now only takes a couple of taps.
Google claims to have recently added Play Store home pages to its Android app, along with app recommendations for Android Automotive, Android TV, and Wear OS. You can find a health tracker for your Galaxy Watch 5 or a video service for your Chromecast by going to “other devices.”
New search filters limit results to those that support hardware other than phones. If you find something you like, you can install it remotely from your phone. Google also stated that the Play Store website had previously been revised to improve navigation and features such as remote installs.
The move is part of an effort to accommodate tablet users, and it could be useful if you can’t (or don’t want to) search for apps on the device where you’ll use them. This is especially useful for Wear OS users who may have to navigate apps on a small screen.
You might find more apps for your devices, increasing your chances of sticking with the Android ecosystem (as Google no doubt hopes).
It’s also hard to ignore the timing. Google will officially unveil the Pixel Watch on October 6th at an event in New York City, and it has recently updated the 1080p Chromecast.
Customers who are unsure whether their favorite app is available may benefit from improved app discovery. Not that you’ll mind if you prefer third-party gear — this could help Android in general.