Google Play has been setting up for a huge update to be released today and now it’s officially gone out we’ve found two new items added from looking through the internal code. They are finally catching up with what two other app stores have known for some time – making things easier to gift make it more likely that people will buy for you. While it’s not out in the system itself yet they are just about here and should be available soon. The first of these major updates are the availability of gift cards. Gift cards aren’t a new feature to online marketplaces as Apple and Amazon have both had the availability for them for years. It’s a new area for Google to enter into though as they did not previously offer them to the public.
The gift cards are being launched with both $10 and $25 increments available to start with. Knowing how popular gift cards are, and with the influx of new Android phones in sales across the globe it’s only a matter of time before larger ones are available as well. Honestly it’s surprisingly that it took so long for Google Play to offer the ability to sell gift cards. I’m sure that the release of the Nexus 7 at cost and the upcoming holiday season have nothing to do with trying to find ways to make more money off of the Play store. Honestly even if those 2 factors weren’t involves it just makes sense. Apple gift cards sell like hotcakes every year so when you factor in Android’s large push into mobile there is no reason not to want to make sales in the marketplace even easier.
The gift cards will ‘eventually’ be redeemable through a mobile device itself or, according to the code, be able to be manually entered at play.google.com/redeem (which is a URL that is not yet available.) It would be safe to assume that at this point it becomes your default currency until it is used up with an option to use another form of payment as well.
On top of gift cards I did say that there would be a second announcement as well on a new feature in the Play store – wishlists! it looks as if we’ll all soon be able to make Wishlists through the Play store in the application itself and most likely on the website once this goes live. In the wishlist you will be able to add applications, games, books, Television shows, movies, magazines, and any other content that they add down the line. The wishlist has less information available on it as it looks that most of it is server based so the code doesn’t show much accept hat it is coming. While some speculate it is just a way to save items for later use I would be willing to wager it will be a list that you can easily share with others for giving suggestions on birthday presents or certain gift giving holidays.
Related Link: Android Police