When it comes to downloading apps, music and movies, one name comes to mind for the majority of people: iTunes. The iTunes name has gone without much competition, but Google Play intends to take on iTunes with their online store re-launch.
The Beginnings of iTunes Competition
Android users were given the option to use the Android Market online store when the service launched as their solution to iTunes. The problem with the Android Market was that it simply didn’t measure up. Users found the interface difficult to navigate and overall the system was disorganized. Aside from the overall difference in interface appearance, users of the original Android Market were most dissatisfied with the fact that they were sent to different sites to purchase different media. Google has undertaken the re-launch of the iTunes competitor in an attempt to create their own giant source of app and media income.
Although branded “Google Play,” the service is actually the Android Market marketplace revamped Google style. For those who already utilize Android based devices, the Google Play icon will soon replace the Android Market icon and provide a one stop location for users to purchase music, apps, eBooks and movies. One of the biggest advances with the newly re-launched service is that it does not redirect users to various websites based upon the type of media they are downloading; it offers everything in one place. Users are also impressed with the clean and simple to use interface of the new Google Play. Could they expect anything less when the product is competing with the likes of iTunes? Simply put, the revamp of Google Play is an attempt to compete with, or at least become a peer to iTunes and in doing so it must somewhat resemble the positive features of its competition. The question is whether Google Play will be able to compete with iTunes. This topic will be addressed shortly, but first let us take a look at some of the reasons as to why Google Play is being launched.
Google Play as a Means to Tie Google to Android
Google Play was not only revamped as a means for Android and Google to compete with the major Apple media provider. Google Play is also a means for Google to tie themselves to the Android brand. Over time, the Android name itself has become lost, few people make the connection between Google and Android and Google thinks it’s about time for that to change. Google Play is Google’s way of making sure that no one forgets that Android is their brainchild just as the iPhone is Apple’s.
Google Play Expands the Google Marketplace
Google Play being revamped is also a means for Google to expand their reach to more than just the android market. Utilizing their reach through your web browser, Google is able to encourage regular users to log in to Google Play to download movies and songs directly to their PC rather than logging in to an additional application like iTunes. It is possible that this maneuver is going to be one of the biggest pushes that help to put Google Play in a peer group with iTunes, but the final scores won’t be in for a while. Many who are looking to project the future of Google Play believe that not only will implementing Google Play in to the Google based browser draw in a new crowd, but it will also win over PC users through social interaction.
Google Play and Social Interaction
As Google Play begins to lure in increasing numbers of users by exposing their re-launch through browser advertising on the Google toolbar, there is also a possibility that they will expand through social interaction. As users download games or interact on social networking sites utilizing Google profiles to do so, Google has the option to tie in Google Play, thereby gaining even more exposure.
Google Play has Potential
Where iPhone users flock directly to iTunes for their app and other media download needs, Android users have never had such a centrally located service. So there is most definitely a niche for Google Play to fill. The number of downloaded apps from Google Play is still nowhere near the twenty-five billion apps that have been reportedly downloaded from iTunes. Still, those types of numbers take time and Google hopes that in time they will be able to count themselves among the giants along with Apple.
Could Google Play be a Peer to iTunes?
It is doubtful that Google Play will be able to grow as large as iTunes, but who is to say that the two have to compete? There will always be the sector of the population who claim to be iPhone lovers and there will always be those who claim to be Android lovers. With that said, it is quite possible that Google Play and iTunes could someday become peers, but the increase in Google Play users is certainly not expected to happen overnight.