Google Play Points is a program that was initially available on the Play Store in Japan and Korea. Its concept is pretty simple and works like a rewards program just for Play Store purchases and downloads.
It is a strictly optional service that you can sign up for by heading over to the ‘Play Points’ section in the app’s hamburger menu. After which you will now earn Play Points for all in-app purchases, subscriptions, movies, television shows, books, audiobooks, and music purchases. Additionally, downloading some free apps will net you some additional Play Points.
So far it’s done pretty well and encourages more app usage, therefore Google is expanding it further.
Google Play Points system has several tiers namely, Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum level. Each dollar you spend at the bronze tier nets you a point and that value goes up as you advance through tiers.
Limited time only game events that will let you get more through “Special earn rates,” like spending $1 on apps or movies and collecting more points in return are also available.
Here’s how it works:
- Bronze: Users earn 1 point for every $1 spent, up to 2x for movie rentals and books during monthly events, and up to 4x for in-game purchases during weekly events.
- Silver: Users earn 1.1 points for every $1, up to 3x for movie rentals and books during monthly events, and up to 4x for in-game purchases during weekly events. There’s also a weekly prize worth up to 50 points.
- Gold: Users earn 1.2 points for every $1, and up to 4x for movie rentals and books during monthly events and in-game purchases during weekly events. There’s a weekly prize worth up to 200 points.
- Platinum: Users earn 1.4 points for every $1, up to 5x for movie rentals and books during monthly events, and up to 4x for in-game purchases during weekly events. There’s a weekly prize worth up to 500 points. You also get premium support from experienced customer service agents.
From the ‘Play Points’ tab accessible on Google Play’s navigation drawer, your points total is noted in the top-right corner along with your current tier.
What can Google Play Points be used for?
- Users can redeem points for special in-app items like characters, gems and more.
- Play Points can also be used for Google Play Credit and rent a movie or buy an audiobook.
- You can use your points to help charities of your choice from a rotating list of nonprofits, starting with Doctors Without Borders USA, Save the Children and the World Food Program USA.
Surprisingly, the program didn’t launch at all in the US at first, but that’s where it’s headed next. Play Points will be available to all users in the US starting next week.
Now users who have signed up will get points after buying anything on the Play Store, including apps, games, music, movies, TV shows, or in-app items, and there are sometimes promotions for simply downloading certain apps and games just as a promotion. Any developer who uses Play Billing will automatically be enrolled here.
Another thing is that, after earning points, you can use them on things in games from developers like EA, King, and Niantic, covering big titles like Candy Crush, Homescapes, and more.
Google says that people are happy to get these extra points and developers are happy with the ROI that they’re getting from the new program. Hopefully, that trend continues as it pushes into the enormous market of the US.
The program is currently available only in Japan, South Korea and coming to the US, with no word on when or if it will be rolled out in other regions around the world. You can find out more about it on the official Google Play Points FAQ page.