Google unveils dramatic Play Store redesign, rollout starting today (Updated with APK)

Google have unveiled a dramatic redesign to the Google Play Store (the update is version 4.0.16). The new design includes the design language that Google is aiming for with Google Now and Android 4.2, with lots of light areas and a card-based interface. The new update is available on handsets running Android 2.2 or newer, which encompasses almost the entire Android range. Google is rolling out the update to all users today, so check your phone. 

The redesign leaked a few weeks ago, and shows Google's willingness to unify all their services visually, similar to Microsoft's "Metro" design language. Previously, the Play Store had been a dark place, with lots of black and grey colour schemes. Now, the Store is light and airy and corresponds with Google Now and Google's Search app on iOS and Android.

The Store now features individual songs, apps and books in their own "cards," with a larger focus on bold, eye-catching imagery. The colour scheme has also been given a makeover; gone are the dreary greys, replaced with a new bright palette. Books, songs and apps have been moved to new sections which Michael Silinski, the product manager for Google Play, claims will ease the process of finding new content on the Play Store. The "My Apps" section has also been updated, with larger icons and more information presented. The download experience has also been simplified: when you download an app, the Store does not open up a page with a "Thanks for downloading" message, now it just remains on the app's page, similar to the App Store on iOS. Google has also been working on clearing up the Store, removing 60,000 "low quality" apps. 

Update: Android Police have managed to obtain the APK, download it here

Droid-life have managed to procure an early update and have created a hands-on video, which we have embedded below: 

Source: Google

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I like the card style UI elements. The fonts and highlight colors are bad though. Somehow everything just too plain. Even on my oversaturated Galaxy SIII the colors look so weak, can't imagine them on something like the Nexus 4. The UI performance is better with transitions but not with scrolling.

Google did great job on Google Now and Google Current. With Google Keep and Play Store they should reconsider the choice of colors and fonts.

Story says version 4.0.16, leaked APK is 4.0.25... just making sure everyone notices that, in case one isn't final or not official, stay frosty.

Any way of forcing an update to the Play Store? I hope the update lands on my Nexus 10 today/night (I don't want to go the APK route).

I wonder if the look of Google Play 4.0 is any indication of what Android 5.0 will look like.

A340600 said,
Any way of forcing an update to the Play Store? I hope the update lands on my Nexus 10 today/night (I don't want to go the APK route).

I wonder if the look of Google Play 4.0 is any indication of what Android 5.0 will look like.

There are links in the OP for manual installs if you dont want to wait.

A340600 said,
Thanks! I want to force the Play Store to update without using the APK though.
Eh, why? Just install the apk like any other and it'll work fine. If you don't you'll just have to wait till Google pushes it to your device.

Well, the thing is I've never installed a APK before, though it looks easy to do, so I should try it.

I also wanted to see if the same forced update would also work on Android 5.0 when it comes out.

I'm happy with the store WP8, but yeah the Store on full Windows 8 needs some work. Way too much white space that could be better used.

I actually think the opposite. There's not enough white space. When you search you're flooded with lots of hard to read colored rectangles. I'd rather it be cleaner and easier to read like the Windows Phone web store.

Remove the slight drop-shadow around some of the buttons (why multiple styles?) and it is Metro. Two color square, flat buttons. Monochrome UI elements. The video talks about an emphasis on text. It is Metro on an Android device, which means it is is automatically goodness while a Microsoft name on it means it is to be derided.

“It is Metro on an Android device” - No, it isn't. Google has a design language, which is present in Google Now, and the new Store reflects that. It has nothing to do with Microsoft, in any way, shape or form.

SoylentG said,
It is Metro on an Android device, which means it is is automatically goodness while a Microsoft name on it means it is to be derided.

Looks nothing like Metro at all.

maxslaterrobins said,
“It is Metro on an Android device” - No, it isn't. Google has a design language, which is present in Google Now, and the new Store reflects that. It has nothing to do with Microsoft, in any way, shape or form.

Pretty much

maxslaterrobins said,
“It is Metro on an Android device” - No, it isn't. Google has a design language, which is present in Google Now, and the new Store reflects that. It has nothing to do with Microsoft, in any way, shape or form.

Square, flat UI with simple colors that places an emphasis on text. If you were to go into the Win8 store, and click on Top free the app tiles look exactly the same but with a little color. Buttons like Update and See More look exactly like Metro buttons.

But you say it doesn't look, so I suppose I am supposed to take the Apple devotee's word for it and it must be true.

Edit: In fact, watching the attached video gave me an idea for a UI element that I was struggling to make look metro-ized in my Win8 app. Thanks Google!

SoylentG said,
Buttons like Update and See More look exactly like Metro buttons.

you mean the green buttons for Update and See More? The same look that the Google play store has had for a while?

SoylentG said,
Square, flat UI with simple colors that places an emphasis on text.

It's not flat. You even said above that it's not flat.

I both use Windows 8 at home and have the new Play Store installed on my phone and can tell you from my first hand experience that it isn't Metro.

SoylentG said,

But you say it doesn't look, so I suppose I am supposed to take the Apple devotee's word for it and it must be true.

Or, you could watch the video.

maxslaterrobins said,

Or, you could watch the video.

And as I wrote above, I watched the video and got some great Metro design ideas for an app I am working on. That is how close their design is to Metro.

contriver87 said,

It's not flat. You even said above that it's not flat.

I both use Windows 8 at home and have the new Play Store installed on my phone and can tell you from my first hand experience that it isn't Metro.

And as I stated, they have a drop shadow on a few items. Except for that, it is metro. Oh, and I guess they don't use Segoe, so that ***must*** mean it is not metro.

SoylentG said,

And as I stated, they have a drop shadow on a few items. Except for that, it is metro. Oh, and I guess they don't use Segoe, so that ***must*** mean it is not metro.


Thinking about this makes me chuckle. Apple can take Samsung to court for putting some icons in a row at the bottom of the screen, they can take Samsung to court for using the color green, and win on both counts. They can file a patent on a square with rounded corners, you have people complaining that anything with a video screen such as tablets, laptops, even televisions are infringing on that patent. But put a drop shadow around a few select items but not others, and suddenly that is a whole new design language and has no similarity to Metro at all.