Google TV is the name of the new interface that Google launched with the latest Chromecast last year. The layout of the home screen focuses on content relevant to the user. Thus, we have access to the applications and settings saved in a secondary tab. But there is no direct way to access the full Play Store on Chromecast with Google TV. At least, not an obvious way. However, the Play Store is there, we just need to use a few simple tricks to find it.
Is having access to the full Play Store important?
However, the application tab on Google TV is sufficient to launch the applications and games we have installed. As well as checking the news to try. Therefore, we can even use voice search to search for specific applications. But this is where the interface is limited. If we want to manage existing applications, manually check for updates, install and change settings, we really need to access the full Play Store.
In addition, the Play Store application has specific tabs to navigate between applications and games. But it also has an appropriate settings menu where we can manage and update the ones we have already installed. We can also switch accounts to install applications that our friends have purchased. And also change some settings regarding automatic updates, payment methods, parental controls, and more.
While this may all be trivial for some Chromecast users, many of us still enjoy having access and control over these features. And this is where opening the Play Store app is important.
Therefore, in this article, we will explain 3 methods for us to access the Play Store application.
Method 1: Google Assistant
Certainly, the easiest and most convenient way to access the Play Store on Chromecast with Google TV is to simply tap the Assistant button on the remote and say “Play Store”.
Then, the Google assistant will recognize the search and open the application immediately.
Method 2: Application Settings
However, the second method is a little more complicated. But it will be useful if we don’t want to speak out loud or if we prefer to never use the Assistant. Therefore, we have to open the Chromecast settings. To do this, we open the side panel and click on Settings -> Applications -> See all applications -> Show system applications -> Google Play Store -> Open. The steps are described in the images below.
Interestingly, this third method will require a little more setup. But, once done, we will have access with a button to open the Play Store whenever we want. First, we will have to install the Button Mapper application to configure the necessary permissions.
So, for the installation we just need to search Google TV for “Button Mapper” that the application will appear to install. Then to activate the permissions we will have to go to the settings, then the System menu, then the accessibility and finally turn on the permission in the application.
Finally, we open the Button Mapper application and choose the button for the remote that we intend to use to open the Play Store. In the images below, we choose the Home button, but only when it is double-clicked. So, to configure, we select Home Button -> Double tap and, in the pop-up menu, we switch to applications and choose Play Store. The steps are described below.
In short, despite the Chromecast being a fantastic device, Google’s decision not to include a dedicated Play Store icon still causes me some confusion. However, there is always a solution to the small obstacles in Android. And today we saw that after all it is very simple to access the Play Store in several ways.