Today we’ve got another Google Play Store update for all you Android users: Play Store 6.9.15 is the first stable release since we jumped up to version 6.9, and while it doesn’t look like much has changed on the surface, there are quite a few interesting things hiding in the code of this update.
You can download the latest version of Play Store 6.9.15 APK right here for free. If you’ve never side-loaded an APK file manually on your Android device before, skip to the bottom of the post for instructions on how to do it. Don’t worry – no rooting required!
What’s new in Play Store 6.9.15?
Essentially the only thing that is noticeably different in version 6.9 of Google Play Store is that Apps and Games now have their own individual charts. It used to be that if you wanted to look at the “Top Apps” tab, it was cluttered up with the most popular games too, making it difficult for users to find the best non-game apps for productivity, health and fitness, news, etc.
Now, there are two separate tabs for “Top Apps” and “Top Games”, which makes navigating and finding the perfect app must easier. The only downside is the “Top New” tabs had to be removed to make space for this change, so it’s going to be a little harder to keep up with all the new releases in the Play Store.
Some users are also seeing an experimental modified app review system which provides more specific and useful information to Android users who are browsing for new apps. If you’re one of the chosen few, when you go to review an app in the Play Store, you’ll be asked a few specific questions about features in the app with a thumbs-up or thumbs-down answer. Later, these answers are anonymously aggregated and displayed in the review section of the app’s page in the Google Play Store as a percentage of thumbs-up.
Hopefully this experiment will pan out into an official change, because it is definitely another step in the right direction of helping connect users with the most relevant apps for them and giving them enough information to make an informed decision on whether to download a given application from the Play Store or to keep looking for a better one.
Which brings us to something interesting hiding in the code of the Play Store 6.9.15 APK…
Play Store 6.9.15 APK teardown
Wouldn’t it be great if you could test drive an app right in the Play Store without having to install it first? It looks like Google is working on integrating just such a feature, which would bring it up to speed with competitors like Amazon who have been offering something similar for quite a while.
Basically, when you examine the code in the Play Store 6.9.15 APK file, there are lines of code which appear to belong to a “Try Now” option integrated into Google Play. If this becomes official in the future, this means that you would be able to “try before you buy” for select apps and games. Instead of having to install the app, Google Play would launch the app from its own server, allowing you to interact with it for a limited period of time as if you had installed it. When the test drive is over, you can decide whether you want to actually install it to your device or not. Pretty cool, right?
There are also hints at the possible development of a special interface for people using virtual reality (VR) devices.
How to download Play Store 6.9.15
Downloading the updated Play Store 6.9.15 APK file is easy as long as you’re running Android 4.0 or higher.
First, go to the security section of your device’s general settings and scroll down until you find something called “Allow unknown sources”. You need to make sure this is enabled (i.e. the box is checked) before you try to install any APK file from outside the Play Store. The default setting is to have this option turned off – it’s a security feature to protect your device from malware that could have been snuck into application files by some unscrupulous third parties. We can assure you that our Play Store APK files are completely safe to download, but because we are a third-party site, this option needs to be turned on before installing our files.
Next, click the download link and save the file. You should see the download in progress in your notifications bar; when it’s finished, tap the notification to open the file. This will open a program on your device called Android Package Installer. Now, all that’s left is to tap the “install” button and accept all the permissions that Play Store needs in order to run properly.
We do recommend that you turn “unknown sources” off again once the installation is complete to protect your device from sneaky or accidental downloads.