Apple Arcade, when launched, will offer iOS users a wealthy lineup of games, some of which are exclusive, for just $4.99 a month. Google Play Pass has the same promise, but it has one major advantage over Apple's subscription service — apps.

While the similarities between the two are undeniable, what makes Google Play Pass different is that it bundles apps in with games, such as Accuweather. At that asking price, customers only get access to games available on Android, they can try out a bevy of apps as well.

Google Play Pass

A Google spokesperson confirms that games and apps can be downloaded individually. That, in effect, makes the Google Play Pass service much more similar to Xbox Game Pass than Apple Arcade. It also sets it apart from Stadia, Google's cloud-gaming platform that streams games from cloud servers.

Google Play Pass offers more than 350 apps and games that are completely unlocked, with no upfront fees, in-app purchases, and most important, ads. While Google will only offer a 10-day free trial period as opposed to Apple's entire month free, the former is slashing the regular subscription price to $1.99 for the first year, which severely undercuts Apple Arcade.

Launch Titles

Notable launch titles included in Google Play Pass are Stardew Valley, Risk, Terraria, Monument Valley, and a lot more. Google will add more titles each month, too. Unlike Apple, Google is not relying on exclusive games, which seems a demerit at first, but actually means it's got a broader lineup than Apple Arcade. Whereas Apple's offering includes high-quality games, Play Pass' pool of titles is more rounded out with utilities, including weather apps and photo editors.

Google Play Pass will get its own tab in the Google Play app. There, apps will be sorted by genre, popularity, and other filters, making it seem like a store within a store. However, these titles will also appear directly in the main store itself, but they'll be designated with a Play Pass ticket badge to distinguish them from regular titles.

Family Sharing

Google Play Pass titles can be shared by the whole family, similar to Apple Arcade. The family manager can share their subscription with up to five other family members, each of whom can access titles independently.

The service will become available shortly to Android devices in the United States, with more countries to be announced soon. Do you have any thoughts about the subscription service? Feel free to sound them off in the comments section below!

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