In a big quality improvement drive Google has cleaned up its Google Play Store in February 2013. Google has removed nearly 60,000 apps from the Google Play which were considered substandard. All of the apps which were removed were full of spam or were not complying to the standards set by Google for app developers. Lot of the apps which were deleted are related to MP3 songs and ringtones.  Some of the developers have voluntarily removed their apps from the store after they were informed about the cleanup by Google.

Google Play store is the only market where any developer who has registered with Google could freely sell his/her apps. Google didn’t have any formal review policy in place for the apps available on Google Play. Some automatic filters kept a tab on the quality of apps that were loaded on its store. However, Google occasionally jumped into the picture to remove any app which has slipped through the automatic filters. On the other hand, Apple never relied on automatic tools to control the quality of apps available on its App store. It had its own review team which scrutinized all the apps submitted to be sold through its App store. Unlike Google, Apple didn’t permit its consumers to install apps from outside its official store. This resulsted in Apple building a very high quality apps collection for its iOS devices.

Despite having the largest number of apps for its Android OS, many of the apps posted on the Google Play were considered by analysts to be of low quality. There were complaints that some of the apps could also damage the devices on to which they are installed. With the gap between the Google Play and Apple’s App store now getting narrowed to almost zero and the market share of Android growing by leaps and bounds all over the word, Google is now focusing on improving the quality of apps available for its devices. The cleanup comes at at a time when its Microsoft and Blackberry are toiling hard to increase the number of apps available for their operating systems.

After the cleanup, Google launched a new look for its Google Play in April 2013. The redesigned Google Play was clear and clutter free so that users can easily find what they are looking for. The dark toned theme of the store is now replaced by a brigher (blue) theme. Related content is bundled at one place on the screen and more recommendations will appear as you scroll down. The purchasing system and the search feature also got upgrades. The redesigned Google Play is available for Android 2.2 and above and will be available to all its users in a phased manner.