Major Google Play Store change offers boost to millions of Android fans

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Google Play Store has introduced a huge new change which will have an impact on millions of Android users worldwide. Android is one of the most used pieces of software in the world, with over two billion devices running the Google mobile OS. And the go-to-place for Android fans looking to download the latest and greatest apps is the official Google Play Store marketplace.

Any changes to the Google Play Store marketplace has a big impact on the Android userbase as a whole.

And the latest update to the Google Play Store could push Android fans running an older version of the OS (such as Pie or Oreo) to upgrade.

As reported on in a post by XDA Developers, Google has just shifted the API level requirement for updates on the Google Play Store.

After making sure all new Play Store apps in August were required to target at least Android 10, Google has now told devs all patches to existing apps must target Android 10 or higher.

This essentially means apps which previously weren’t focused on Android 10 will now be pushed towards taking advantages of the OS’s software and security improvements.

In a post online Google said: “Every new Android version introduces changes that bring significant security and performance improvements as well as enhance the user experience of Android overall.

“Some of these changes only apply to apps that explicitly declare support.

“Configuring your app to target a recent API level ensures that users can benefit from these improvements, while still allowing it to run on older Android versions.

“Targeting a recent API level also allows your app to take advantage of the platform’s latest features to delight your users.

“Furthermore, as of Android 10 (API level 29), users see a warning when starting an app for the first time if the app targets Android 5.1 (API level 22) or lower.”

The Play Store update means new apps and updates to existing programmes will run best on Android 10 or above, which could push users running older versions of the OS to upgrade.

And there’s reason to believe that some Android fans could need persuading up upgrade to a newer version of the Google OS.

According to NetMarketShare stats, in October Android 10.0 was the most used mobile OS around, with the software running on 25.14 percent of devices.

However, the number of combined devices running either Android 9.0 or Android 8.1 exceeds this.

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NetMarketShare stats claim Android 9.0 is used on 17.73 percent of devices with Android 8.1 on 10.87 percent.

The next most popular versions of Android are 6.0, 8.0, 7.0, 5.1, 7.1 and 4.0. The NetMarketShare stats for October 2020 doesn’t include data on Android 11.

As the stats show, older versions of Android still have a considerable userbase – despite all the bells and whistles newer builds offer.

This latest Google Play Store change could help give those running Android Pie, Oreo, Nougat et al yet another reason to upgrade – to the point where it becomes virtually irresistible.

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