Google declared yesterday that the Google Play store now houses 700,000 apps, and this puts it on par with the Apple App Store, which touched this number last week.

Google Play and App Store are now miles ahead of the Windows Store. Microsoft recently announced that the Windows Store has around 120,000 apps in its arsenal.

As per a report by Bloomberg, the author Brian Womack states, “By luring software developers to its Android platform, Google is attempting to eliminate a key selling point Apple has used for the iPhone and iPad. Applications have become a battleground as the two companies look for an edge in the $219.1 billion smartphone market, akin to how Microsoft Corp. dominated the personal-computer business by getting other companies to write programs for its Windows operating system.”

Now expanding to support the purchase of movies and magazines

Now house 700,000 apps

Google recently rolled out an update (version number is 3.9.16) for its official marketplace for Android apps, Google Play. The latest update to the store allows you to remove apps from the All Apps list, which records all your app downloads to date, in addition to remembering your location in lists, and new icons for notifications and installed apps.

In addition, the updated Play Store remembers where you are when looking at a list, including the All Apps list as well as the My Apps list. This feature will remember your location in a list, so that whenever you click on an option in a list and go back, you’re returned right to the place where you were earlier.

What’s more, you can now multi-select apps in the All Apps list. Selecting multiple apps is done by long-pressing an app, and tapping the More apps option. You can delete apps from the lists in one go.

Google has also chosen to change the notification icon for new app updates. Notifications by Play Store are now expandable, and show more information about app updates. The icon for individual apps after they are installed no longer shows a generic icon; you now get the icon for the app in the notification after you install it.

Google recently held a massive discount sale in celebration after its Play Store recorded 25 billion app downloads. The search giant was offering top rated games and apps at discounted rates of just 25 Cents (Rs 13). The company was also promoting special collections like 25 movies you must own, 25 banned books, 25 albums that changed the world and the store's 25 top selling magazines, at special prices.

Google has once again added India to the list of countries where developers register to be Google Checkout Merchants so that they can charge for apps and include in-app purchases.

According to Google, Android device activation has risen by more than 400 percent over the past year. The number of Android users downloading apps is also now more than it was in the previous three years combined. This has made India the fourth-largest market for app downloads worldwide.

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