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How to enable Google Play Store developer options and internal app sharing

Most people know about Android developer options, but now there's a Google Play version.
By
May 28, 2022

Many Android users — even those who have never developed an app in their lives — already know about Android developer options. You need to know about this section of the OS when you are developing apps or when you want to do things like unlock bootloaders, flash custom ROMs, or enable certain hidden features. However, now there are Google Play Store developer options, a new set of features that applies to the Google Play Store only.

Google Play developer options operate independently of the primary Android options and must be enabled differently. Follow along here, and we’ll tell you how to enable Google Play developer options, as well as what benefits it could bring.

More: Learn how to use the Google Play Store with this guide

QUICK ANSWER

Enable Google Play Store developer options by opening the Google Play Store app, tapping on your profile icon, and selecting Settings. Expand the About section and tap the Play Store Version seven times.


JUMP TO KEY SECTIONS

Editor’s note: These steps were put together using a Google Pixel 4a with 5G running Android 12. Some steps might differ, depending on your hardware and software.

How to enable Google Play developer options

The first thing you need to do before completing any of these steps is to make sure you are running the latest version of the Google Play Store. Open the Google Play Store app, tap on your profile icon, and select Settings. Expand the About section to find Play Store version, and hit Update Play Store. Google will either tell you that you’re on the latest version or it will update the app for you. Once you’re running the newest version of the Google Play Store, go to the same section and tap on the Play Store version seven times.

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. Launch the Google Play Store app.
  2. Tap on your profile icon.
  3. Select Settings.
  4. Expand the About section.
  5. Where it says Play Store Version, tap on Update Play Store. Whether you’re running the latest Google Play Store version or need to update, you’ll be notified.
  6. In the same section, tap on Play Store Version seven times.

How to disable Google Play developer options

If you ever want to get rid of Google Play Store developer options, there is sadly no straightforward way to do it. We’re here to help, though. It turns out clearing the Google Play Store app’s storage does the trick! Just open the Settings app and go into Apps. Select See all apps and tap on the Google Play Store app. Hit Storage & cache. Tap on Clear storage. Open the Google Play Store, and it should be back to normal!

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Go into Apps.
  3. Tap on See all apps.
  4. Find and select the Google Play Store.
  5. Select Storage & cache.
  6. Hit Clear storage.
  7. Google Play Store developer options should now be disabled.

Related: How to change the language or country in the Google Play Store

What is internal app sharing?

Developers who are creating Android apps will often send test versions of the app to members of their team. This new internal app sharing feature within Google Play developer options makes that process easier. Team members can share app versions from within the Play Store, rather than sideload APKs.

When you enable internal app sharing, Google explains this a bit and also warns you about how this could be dangerous. All in all, this feature shouldn’t affect non-developers too much. However, it’s good to know that this feature exists because Google might add future Google Play developer options, which could be helpful even to non-developers (just like Android developer options).

To enable internal app sharing, open the Google Play Store and tap on the profile icon. Go into Settings, expand General, and toggle Internal app sharing on.

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. Open the Google Play Store.
  2. Tap on your profile icon.
  3. Select Settings.
  4. Expand the General section.
  5. Toggle on Internal app sharing.

So far, you can use it to enable internal app sharing. It helps developers send test versions of an app to participants.

There could be many reasons why the Google Play Store isn’t working for you. We have a complete troubleshooting guide for you.

Having the Google Play Store developer options enabled should create no problems. You might run into some bugs if you have a developer’s experimental version of an app, though.

The Google Play Store should update automatically. If, for some reason, yours didn’t, simply update it from the app’s Settings. Expand the About section and tap on Update Play Store.