Android Market ditched for new Google Play portal

Shock revamp brings new home for apps, movies, books and music

The Android Market is no more. Google has aligned its digital content in one store under the new Google Play banner. With elements of iCloud built in, it aims to tackle iTunes

Google has announced that it is abandoning the long-standing Android Market name in favour or a new all-encompassing Google Play service through which it will sell apps, books, movies and music.

Tuesday's shock announcement, which is effective immediately, sees the Android Market for apps and games renamed the Google Play Store, while the Music shop will be called Play Music. Movies will be called Play Movies and Books will be called, yep you guessed it, Play Books.

The new store will span Google-powered smartphones and tablets as well as the Google TV platform. Naturally there's also a fully functioning web store replace the current Android Market.

The idea is to, in some respects mimic Apple's iCloud portal, by allowing users to purchase items on their smartphone or tablet and have the content instantly appear on a range of devices. If you buy a song on your laptop it'll appear on your phone and if you're reading a book, your page will be saved across over your array of tech.

It is thought that Google has opted for the change due to the disappointing performance of its Music and Movies sections and hopes that the revamp will generate more revenue and allow it to compete with iTunes.

Android phone and tablet owners can expect the Market application to be replaced with the new Google Play Store icon within the next few days, providing they're running the Android 2.2 operating system or above.

The re-designed web-portal is live already, offering a fresh look at Google's vast array of digital content, which trails behind iTunes and Amazon despite boasting competitive prices and libraries.