If You Have an Android, You'll Be Barred From Doing This Starting Today
Changes to Google Play's payments policy will limit what you can purchase.
Having a smartphone—whether you're a devout Apple iPhone user or committed to Google's Android—gives you the ability to purchase and download what you need, when you need it. You can sign in to your Netflix account from the palm of your hand, find an app to keep you up-to-date on the latest news, or stay in touch with friends on your favorite social media site. But Android users may be concerned upon learning that two apps are undergoing significant changes, which may complicate how you participate in a beloved pastime. Read on to learn more about how a Google policy revision could affect your Android.
Android users won't be able to purchase digital books through certain apps.
Android users may be disappointed to learn that purchasing digital books in the Barnes & Noble NOOK Android app is no longer possible, as of April 4, The Verge reported. To make matters worse, as of April 1, you also are no longer able to purchase audiobook titles from Amazon's Audible for Google Play Android app with a credit or debit card.
Google announced in September that it would be updating policies for in-app transactions.
As reported by The Verge, this change is tied to a policy update from Google that requires apps to use Google Play's (the name for the Android app store) billing systems. In Sept. 2020, Google announced which apps would be required to use their billing system, giving an initial deadline of Sept. 20, 2021. Both Barnes & Noble and Audible are just now making adjustments, following Google's six-month extension to March 31, 2022.
Dan Jackson, a spokesperson for Google, directed The Verge to a page titled "Understanding Google Play's Payments Policy," when queried about the change. The page states that "Google Play's billing system is required for developers offering in-app purchases of digital goods and services distributed on Google Play," and adds a note that those using "alternative in-app billing" would need to remove it to comply with the company's policy.
Here's how this change will affect you if you use NOOK software on your Android.
In a press release, Barnes & Noble announced that with the release of NOOK Software Version 6.1, users would no longer be able to buy directly from the Barnes & Noble NOOK App for Android, as well as the NOOK HD 10" Designed with Lenovo. Users can still purchase ebooks through the app if they have not updated it, but once the new version is downloaded, you cannot return to the earlier version, according to the statement.
"Digital content purchases can be made on BN.com using the account registered to your NOOK account, which will then sync to your Library," the statement reads, in an effort to reassure Android users. "Additionally, you can add books to your Wishlist from the app, which will sync with your Wishlist on BN.com so you can remember and purchase your favorites easily."
And if you get audiobooks via Audible, this is how the policy change will affect you.
Audible noted that Android users' "experience will change," as of April 1, letting customers know that "most of the features you love about the Audible app will remain the same." While you can still purchase titles with a Membership Credit and buy additional credits, you can no longer purchase titles directly with your credit or debit card, participate in sale purchasing, or update your account and payment information in the Audible for Google Play Android app.
Additionally, anyone getting a new Audible membership via the Android app will now be billed through Google Play, as opposed to Audible. Members will now need to manage their membership through the Google Play Store App.