Google Play Points comes to the US, bringing discounts, exclusive content and more

Google Play Points

After launching in Japan a little over a year ago, Google Play Points expanded to Korea earlier this year -- and now Google is bring it to the US. But just what is Google Play Points?

In short, it's a loyalty reward program that lets Android users earn points pretty much for simply using Google Play. Buy an app, and you'll earn points. Buy a book or movie, and you'll earn points. Take out a subscription, and you'll earn points. You get the idea. These points can then be used to pay for other things in part or in full, or they can be donated to charity. Here's the lowdown.

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It's free to sign up for Google Play Points and -- unless you want to go out of your way to try to earn more points -- there's no need to do anything different to normal. When you buy apps, in-app items, movies, books, subscriptions and so on, you'll be awarded points. In some cases, there are points available on free items too, and special events can help you to earn point multipliers.

The points you accrue can be used to get discounts on future purchases, or to gain special in-app and in-game items. Writing about the US launch of the program, Google says:

Weekly points events can boost your earning rate on movies, books, and select games. Google Play Points has four levels, from Bronze to Platinum. Your level depends on how many points you've collected, and higher levels have perks like weekly prizes.

If you feel like being generous with your points, you can do so, as Google explains:

We've been inspired by the Play community's generosity and participation in Play Store giving. You can use your points to help support a great cause – or causes -- of your choice from a rotating list of nonprofits, starting with Doctors Without Borders USA, Save the Children and the World Food Program USA.

More details can be found on the Google Play Points website.

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