Google Shifts Video Transactions from Its Play Store to Google TV

Google TV Emulator
(Image credit: Google)

Google continues to prioritize its Google TV app, making it the new destination for Google device users to rent and buy TV shows and movies.

Starting in May, the Google Play store, which resides in the Android operating system, will no longer feature a "Movies & TV" tab. Instead, to rent and buy video, users of devices like Android phones and tablets, as well as smart TV's powered by Google TV, will now rent and purchase video titles through the "library" tab of the Google TV app. 

Google introduced Google TV in October 2020 as a kind of next-generation iteration of Android TV. In addition to powering its new Chromecast OTT dongle with the software, it made Google TV a pre-installed app on Android mobile devices to watch movies and shows, replacing the "Play Movies & TV" feature within Android. 

The move marks the further diminishment of Google Play, which was already shrunk big-time in December 2020, when Google stopped selling songs and full-length albums and ported its music biz to subscription service Google Music. With the exit of movies and TV shows, Google Play is now a store for apps and books. 

It should be noted that elements like Google Play and Google Play Movies & TV haven't disappeared from the face of Earth. For example, if you rent or buy a movie title on an Apple iOS device through the Google app, you'll still need to watch it via the Google Play Movies & TV app for iOS. 

Unclear to us: A number of third-party device makers, including smart TV manufacturers, still use Android TV. We're not yet sure how the change will affect users of Google's legacy CTV OS platform. 

Google said in January that Google TV and Android TV are now used in 110 million devices worldwide. 

Daniel Frankel

Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!