Besides the doodles, changes to the Google homepage are rare. So, when Google makes changes to one of the most visited pages on the web, it’s a big deal. And when Google makes a change to its homepage that links directly to Google’s version of iTunes, it raises some questions.
Google added a link to its new Google play store to the top navigation bar on its homepage this week. The Google Play store is the new service from Google that combined the Android Marketplace, Google Music, and the Google eBookstore. Movies also recently became available on Google Play, at least in some countries, and there is evidence the service might sell audiobooks and magazines soon too.
There is also a link to Google Play underneath the search bar with the slogan “the entertainment you love, anywhere you go.” The Google Play store is meant to bring Google’s various marketplaces under one re-branded heading, where it can be consistent across both mobile and other platforms.
Adding a link to Google Play on its homescreen means Google means to push the service heavily. If you have an Android phone, the Android Marketplace on it has probably already been converted to the Google Play app. Moving aggressively into iTunes’ territory, Google has stepped away from its advertising model in this instance. Will this further step into the online retail space be good for Google, or is it changing itself too much? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.