If you have a Wear OS smartwatch linked to the same Google account, the Play Store will show the version number for only the smartwatch version of the app. The information also continues to appear for AndroidTV or Google TV versions of apps. The Play Store web client, meanwhile, keeps the version numbers for all apps, including the phone versions. Version 31.6.13-21 of the mobile app that rolled out recently appears to be the culprit.
The Play Store version numbers for apps are no longer shown by Google. The modification seems to have started rolling out recently and, for the time being, only impacts the phone versions of the apps. It’s unclear whether the corporation changed this intentionally or if a defect was to blame. The “App info” portion of a listing’s description, which you can access by tapping the “About this app” button, has traditionally included the app version number as the first item. However, some customers have observed that the item is gone from their device, according to 9to5Google. Google specifically took away that data from the apps’ phone versions.
Google has removed key app information from the Play Store in the past too
Unless this is a bug, it seems like Google enjoys depriving users of key app information on the Play Store. There have been multiple such instances over the past few months. In November last year, the company briefly stopped showing when an app was last updated to some users, much to their frustration. It did that again earlier this year before reinstating the information a few days later.
This suggests that the change isn’t deliberate and that it’s caused by a bug. As the new report notes, the Play Store shows the version number for phone apps twice within the description — both under the “App info” and “Compatibility for your active devices” sections. Maybe it wanted to remove the item from one of the two places but accidentally removed both. We certainly hope that’s the case. Otherwise, it would force users to dig into the phone settings to check app version numbers. Not being able to check version numbers before installing an app or updating would also prevent users from avoiding buggy releases.
If that was not enough, Google last month removed the Permissions list. This decision attracted wide criticism of the company, forcing it to reinstate the list shortly afterward. But fresh from that backlash, the Android maker seems to have taken away another key piece of information from the Play Store. Let’s hope it’s a bug and that version numbers for phone apps will be back for everyone soon.