Google Play Store’s search filters are seemingly appearing for a wider audience now after a long wait

Google is one of the most widely used search engines, and its Play Store has one of the largest collections of applications. But when it comes to the search refinement options in its very own Play Store, Google seems to have been slacking out a bit!

In 2016, Google started addressing this issue and launched a couple of search filters for the Play Store. In 2017, Google expanded its tests on more search filters, when some users started seeing green suggestions while typing away a word in the Play Store’s search bar. So, it was more likely to be a keyword that Google used to provide instead of some proper filters. And the words that were supposed to refine the search results would either be ‘free’ or ‘premium’ or ‘top-rated’ and nothing else.

Sadly, even those least specific filters did not last and were not even available for everyone. However, Google brought them out again later with some ramifications, but they were still not available for a large audience. The good news now is that those search filters are back again, and they are rolling out widely now.

These search filters are still not very consistent, but at least they are being spotted now in various countries and on different devices too, which means that a wide audience can now make use of them. Although they are still being enabled server-side, they can be seen in the new as well as slightly older versions of the Play Store, including the v21.0.17.

The most commonly seen filters are based on ratings, like there are 4.5+ star and 4+ star filters, and then there are filters based on the prices, Editor’s choice, and latest apps.

But all these filters may or may not appear on all apps always. If you are searching for an app, you may see the rating filters, but not the price ones. And vice versa.

Secondly, if you type a well-known word/app in the search bar, like Facebook or WhatsApp, there are chances that no filters will appear with their search results. It is okay because everyone knows about these apps, so it is not mandatory to see them through specific filters. Besides, they are most likely going to pop up in the first result, but if you add the word ‘utility’ or ‘tool’ to the names of the apps you are searching, surprisingly Google will start showing you all the filters with them! And then, you can choose all the filters you want to further narrow down your search and make it more efficient.

Unlike previously, now the filters for ‘free apps’ or ‘ad-free apps’ are not available, and that is quite disappointing. But if we look it from Google’s perspective, of course, it will not show you those options easily! But at least it can bring filters based on ‘download numbers,’ ‘app size in MB,’ and the ‘top-most grossing apps.’ That will help the users more when they are searching for different applications.

Let us hope that this time, Google makes this change permanent and the search filters keep showing always for all apps, and for everyone, instead of appearing and disappearing after every little while, and for a smaller group of people only.

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