Family Library Allows Family Members To Share Google Play Purchases

Google on Wednesday debuted Family Library, which will let up to six family members share their purchases on Google Play.

“When you buy an eligible app, game, movie, TV show, or book in the Play Store, you can now share it with your family -- across devices -- with no additional sign-up fee,” Raj Iyengar, product manager at Google Play, notes in a new blog post.

Now, all purchases added to Family Library will be available across Android devices, while movies, TV shows and books can be consumed on iOS devices and the Web.

Of course, the new feature doesn’t mean that family members have to share all of their content purchases with one another. Rather, they can choose which items they want to share.

When families sign up for the service, they can select a credit card to share as their official payment method, but individual members will always have the option of making purchases with their personal credit cards or gift cards.

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The feature also includes the option to subject the purchases of younger family members to elder approval.

Separately, Google is promoting a similar offer with its Play Music service. Per the new plan, up to six family members can stream songs on demand for $14.99 a month.

With its new Family Library feature, Google is trying to one-up Apple, and appeal to an increasingly multiplatform media environment. Smartphones displaced the PC as the dominant device for downloads and content consumption, earlier this year.

Specifically, Limelight Networks found that 62% of users download content onto Android-based smartphones, while 43% of Apple’s iPad and 45% Android tablets led the way as the prevalent destination for content downloads.

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