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Google Play Store updated to help you better manage your Android apps

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Your app installation and updation experience on the Google Play Store is about to get a whole lot better with this latest update. We’re all acquainted with the fact that our Android phones soon become packed with more apps than we actually use or even require.

These apps just sit and accumulate dust (read hog space!) on our devices, thus, making us forget about them over a period of time. This is also because most of us slack off the tedious chore of going through the lengthy list of apps — to uninstall or update them if we’re still planning to keep them around.

However, Google has been testing an updated and minimalistic view for its My Apps & Games section that provides you more control over your apps. The same interface changes have now started rolling out broadly to Android users, initially spotted by Android Police.

This is a substantial update over the previous layout, which made use of separate cards with only the name and rating information for the application. The primary question raised by Google Play Store users was about the white space, star ratings on the apps section. It has now been redesigned to display more info (like file size, last used or updated) through a smaller, condensed card-like structure.

As seen in the screenshots attached below, the most prominent change that immediately catches our eye is the separation of updates and installed section. The former just shows the apps which need to be updated, along with the update size and when you last updated the app. The latter now displays the complete info about the apps installed on your smartphone, along with the total size and last time you had used the same.

This new user interface no longer requires you to go through multiple taps and screens to know about the update — or even update the app. Any unnecessary info (such as developer, ratings, etc.) has been removed from the app cards in this section. Now, you even have the update button available right on the app card — to initiate updates right then and there. The ‘update all’ button at the top continues to prevail, but it has updated with a new ‘refresh’ button to regularly check for fresh updates — which earlier required you to restart the Play Store app.

As for the Installed apps screen, the same condensed user interface has been deployed across different screens of the ‘My Apps and Games’ section. It shows you the total number of applications installed on your smartphone along with the total size of each app you have on your device. These apps also carry the open or update button on the condensed cards, which can be sorted by four common criteria — alphabetical, last updated, last updated and size.

This update to the Play Store is currently rolling out widely to all Android users. It does bring several likable features to the table but this update is still far from perfect. Google has now snatched away our ability to mass-install applications from the Library section in the Play Store. Thus, this makes it difficult to reinstall all apps at once on a new smartphone or one you’ve just factory reset. The said update comes on the heels of several other neat features which have been added to the Play Store in the last couple of months.

A hands-on guy fascinated by new apps, technologies and enterprise products.

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