Google Play is getting some new features which haven’t been really announced as yet, but it’s definitely coming. The features are for developers and include the new Developer Console app released this morning and also includes features like Betas, a pre-launch report and analytics and more.
Open Betas are a pretty important way for developers to test out their apps at greater scale before a public launch, ironing out those bugs before they get into the main stream. Now Google is making it easier to find and participate in those Betas:
We’re making open beta tests easier to find and participate in: apps that are available only as open betas and aren’t in production yet will soon appear in Play search results, users will be able to opt-in from Play store listings directly, and users will be able to send you private feedback through your Play store listing too.
Part of this new release is a new section in Google Play called ‘Google Play Early Access’. Early Access will highlight these betas so if you see something interesting you can get in on the ground floor as it were.
Google Play is also getting better features for users who are doing something big – not just one task, but many tasks that scale up to one big thing, like buying a house. If you were looking at buying a house, a Google Play Collection could contain apps like ‘best apps for finding real estate, keeping notes, getting a mortgage, and travelling in the area in one handy collection’.
For developers a new range of tools and analytics will also help before you launch your product. Using Firebase, Google’s testing suite, apps will be tested and reports generated prior to the launch of an app. Reports will contain a list of issues and potential fixes and as a bonus Firebase will test your app on a range of Android devices to make sure it’s working on as wide a variety as possible.
After you launch, the analytics will also show you how your app stacks up against the competition, as well as how to grow your user base with User Acquisition performance reports that can tell you which audience members you’re not reaching so you can focus there. It’s all about continual improvement.
There’s a great deal of cool stuff in the Google Play update, some for us as users and a lot more for developers to get more information and tools to make sure the apps work as intended. Google I/O is just starting so stay tuned for more.