How to: Manage Your Android Devices in Google Play

Usability is one of the reasons I love Google Play. For me, it’s simply a matter of creating and managing my profile.

If you don’t know what Google Play is, you’re missing out on a hugeand important, aspect of the Android experience. Note, the same could be said about Amazon Appstore for Android, but this post is all about Google Play.

What is Google Play? Quite simply, Google Play is the brains of your Android experience. It’s the cloud where your apps, movies, magazines, and books sit snugly for your current or future enjoyment. Through the play store, and your Google Wallet account, you can purchase and manage the content on your Android phone or tablet.

For instance, by visiting the Android Apps section, you’ll see all of the available apps. When you visit the Books section, you can add books to your Google device.

Google Play used to suck. However, Google revamped the “Android Market,” which created Google Play, and the experience we now have.

There are a couple of areas to pay attention to when you’re using Google Play. In the screenshot below, you’ll see the main portion of the Google Play homepage. At the top, you’ll see a link to “My Android Apps”, where you can manage the apps on your Android devices. Down lower, you’ll see links to Android Apps, where you actually shop for apps, and Devices, where you can get information about the Android tablets or phones synced with your device.

The links “below the fold” give you information about recommended apps, television programs, music, movies, and books, among other things. Down at the bottom of the screen is a link to “My Orders & Settings”, which contains, obviously, a list of every app, book, movie, magazine or TV program you’ve ever ordered.

One of the things I like about the Orders page is the ability to tabulate the costs of each app. As you’d see, if you looked at my account, I spend a lot of money on apps (so if you’d like to donate to the cause, please let me know).

Under the Settings tab, you’ll find a list of all of the devices you own or have ever associated with your Google account.

Clicking on the corresponding link allows you to edit, remove, or rename the device.

One of the features I love most in the improved Google Play is the ability to install apps over-the-air. From any app, click INSTALL or INSTALL > select the device under the drop-down “SEND TO ANOTHER DEVICE…” menu > click INSTALL. This works for any product, not just apps, in Google Play.

Google Play will recognize which devices are compatible with the app, and sends it effortlessly to your Android tablet or phone. Repeat the process for each device you want to install the product on. The process takes very little time, and you can easily handle a multitude of app installs to multiple devices (today I installed different 3 apps to 3 different devices in about 1 minute).

One final feature that I love is the My Android Apps tab that lists all of the apps installed on each of your devices.

What I like most is being able to see what app is on which device, and easily adding a missing one to one of my other Android devices.

If you haven’t checked out Google Play in awhile, you’re missing out. Google Play offers is high-powered tool for Android device management.

7 Responses to How to: Manage Your Android Devices in Google Play

  1. Good afternoon Sir,

    Thank you for the article… Did you notice that they changed Google Play and you can no longer “… see what app is on which device, and easily adding a missing one to one of my other Android devices.”

    Perhaps I am missing something, although I have been looking for hours trying to find a similar interface there in Play. May I please ask if you have a fix or some advice?

    Thank you,
    Robert Fox

  2. Hey. Just replaced my Samsung Galaxy with a Nexus 5 (which I love). I have the Play Store installed and have added several apps to my Nexus, however, when I visit Google Play on the Net, it does not show my device as a registered device?? Shows the Galaxy (which my wife is using now), but not the Nexus… Any ideas?

    • My guess is that you’re adding the apps under a different Google account. Did you check to make sure that’s not the case? If not, maybe it’s a matter of Google updating slowly. I had this issue when I synced mine.

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Jeff Taylor

I’m just an ordinary guy living an extraordinary life. I’m also an attorney and I blog about Android for lawyers. You can follow me on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, or Google+.