Friday, June 29, 2012

Google Play website gets remote update, uninstall feature

It's Google I/O week, and thus we'd expect to hear a lot of Google and Android-based news. The latest coming out of the conference is a small, but oft-requested tweak to the online Play Store: the ability to uninstall and update apps directly from the Web.

While Android users have been able to remotely install apps from the Google Play Store since early 2011 (when it was still the Android Market), a user couldn't remotely uninstall apps.

They also couldn't update an app (or even see if an app needed updating). This is, of course, for apps that require a manual update or if the device has been offline and hasn't received an "automatic update" (or naturally, for those who turn off the auto-update feature).

To see the new interface, log into Google Play and go to the My Android Apps section.

One "bug" we see is that although the Web interface lists "System Apps," such as the Blockbuster app on Verizon, it won't let a user uninstall updates to a system app. It just says "System App" in the Web interface installed of "Installed" (with a little trash can next to it to uninstall) or "Update."

As noted when the Nexus 7 and Nexus Q were leaked prior to the Google I/O keynote, Google still has a ways to go to catch up to Apple in terms of coordination between their website and new functionality. The support page related to Google Play still says (emphasis ours):

"Android apps may only be uninstalled from the device itself - there is no way to remotely uninstall items from"

No comments: