Android Market receives major overhaul

December 11, 2010, 4:23 AM UTC

New features include a new carousel interface, better organization with single page view and better categorization.

Eric Chu, Google’s Mobile Platform Program Manager, posted some screenshots and a description of the upcoming changes to the Android Market on the Google Developer blog this evening.  Android Market is the Google(GOOG) equivalent to Apple’s (AAPL) App Store.

With a focus on improving discoverability and merchandising, we’ve introduced a new carousel on the home and category screens. Users can quickly flip through the carousel to view promoted applications and immediately go to the download page for the application they want. Developers have been very active in creating great Widgets and Live Wallpapers. To make it easier for users to find their favorites, we’re introducing two new categories for Widgets and Live Wallpapers. Applications that include Widgets and Wallpapers will be automatically added to those new categories. We’ll also be adding more categories for popular applications and games in the weeks ahead. In addition, the app details page now includes Related content, which makes it easier for users to quickly find apps of similar interest.

To streamline the browse-to-purchase experience, users can now access all the information about an application on a single page without the need to navigate across different tabs. We’re also introducing application content rating to provide users with more information about applications they are interested in. Since most users who request a refund do so within minutes of purchase, we will reduce the refund window on Market to 15 minutes. This change will be largely transparent to buyers, but will help developers manage their businesses more effectively.

Android’s market has received some heat for its lack of organization and interface.  Hopefully this update makes up for that.  Google says this is rolling out over the next few weeks.  It hasn’t hit my Nexus S yet but the weekend is young.