Interior design app Houzz was named the overall best Android app of the year in the inaugural Google Play Awards days after Google rolled out Play Store version 6.7.

Previously, Google only collated annual Best Of lists for apps on the Google Play Store. This year, Google went in a different direction, emulating Apple's annual awards of choosing winners in different categories.

However, the similarities with Apple's annual app awards end there. While Apple selects the best apps for the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch, along with distinctions such as "most innovative," Google chose 5 nominees across 10 categories without differentiating between smartphone and tablet apps.

Houzz offers users with everything that they need to know for renovations or redecorations, including millions of high-resolution pictures, connections with a million active professionals in the home improvement industry, and the ability to sketch out drawing and annotations on Houzz photos.

The complete list of winners for the inaugural Google Play Awards are as follows:

  • Best App - Houzz
  • Best Families App - Thinkrolls 2
  • Best Game - Clash Royale
  • Best Use of Material Design - Robinhood
  • Best Use of Google Play Game Services - Table Tennis Touch
  • Early Adopter - World Around Me
  • Go Global - Pokémon Shuffle Mobile
  • Most Innovative - NYT VR
  • Standout Indie - Alphabear
  • Standout Startup - Hopper

Of note is that there is more than one category on innovation, giving a chance to startups in bagging an award. Google also gave awards that made the most use of the services that the company offers.

The winners were chosen by a panel made up of Google experts, with the ratings based on a variety of factors such as innovation and app quality. To receive a nomination, apps should have launched or received a major update within the past 12 months.

Among the other nominated apps are Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes, Neko Atsume: Kitty Collector, Card Wars - Adventure Time, Marvel Future Fight, Fast like a Fox, SmartNews, This War of Mine and Prune.

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