What did Google do that Apple should do? YouTube TV? Nope. Apple TV+ is nothing like YouTube TV which really is just streaming cable TV from 1999. Is it releasing a new phone’s features before releasing the new phone? Uh uh. Apple has been doing that– somewhat secretly– for years. Is it diverting search engine results to its own products? No. Apple has been doing that, too. For years. Stupidly, I might add.
So, what did Google just do that you and I both want Apple to do?
First, what did Apple do? Apple Arcade. A $4.99 subscription game service; over 100 games, multiple devices, download or online, no ads, no upgrades, one low price.
Wait. What? Does Google have that? Yes, but better.
It’s called Google Play Pass– Google Play is Google’s equivalent to Apple’s App Store– which is a $4.99 monthly pass to get up to 350 apps– games and apps– and seems like Google copying Apple again, but only better?
Yes and no. More games and apps for the same money is better. Generally speaking, Google’s Android apps are not as good quality as Apple’s apps for iPhone and iPad so the larger number is required to make the package worthwhile.
Think of the $4.99 monthly subscription as a pass for both games and apps. Apple Arcade is games only.
What are the differences?
Google Play Pass is, for now, U.S. only. Apple Arcade launched in more than 150 countries.
Apple Arcade is curated by humans. Have you ever seen or spoken to a Google employee? I mean, a human employee? Apple wants Arcade games to be different than standard App Store fare so no in-app purchase upgrades, no advertising, no gimmicks to get people to play more and pay more.
Since Google is playing from behnd again, and following Apple’s lead again, it does not match the iPhone maker’s one-month free trial. Instead, Android users get a 10-day free trial, then a $1.99 introductory price for the first year. The $4.99 monthly price tag won’t show up for a year.
Of course, at $1.99 a month, divvied up between 350 app developers, means Google treats its developers the way they treat users; pawns in a chess game with Apple.
I want what Google did, though? Apps are in the package. A hundred non-game apps might put a dent into my monthly App Store subscription fees. I like that.