[Update: Fixed] Google changes how Play Store changelogs are previewed, resulting in some awkward phrasing
The Google Play Store has received a number of updates over the last few months. Google added one-tap buttons to leave betas and more, the Google Play Pass subscription, and a brand new Material Theme redesign. That new design gave us (eventually) a Dark Theme that works with the Android 10 system setting, but it also brought a strange change to the changelog previews.
The “What’s new” section on an app listing is where developers can share any new features or fixes that were included in the update. Some developers use this better than others, but that’s a different topic. One strange decision that Google made with the Material Theme redesign was to shorten changelogs by removing text from the middle of the excerpt. The beginning and the end of the changelog are smushed together with ellipsis separating the text. Here are two examples:
As you can see, this is a messy solution to shortening the excerpt. The text is combined in different spots depending on screen size, font scaling, and screen orientation. It would make much more sense to truncate the excerpt from the end. One side effect of Google’s method is some humorous and NSFW text combinations showing up in the Play Store. Here are two examples:
New in this version: Improvements and bug… so you’ve always got the latest and greatest.
We regularly update our app to provide you a…ss a thing, just keep your Updates turned on.
One developer has taken matters into their own hands and created a script that generates multiple possible shortened text results based on your changelog. The script then automatically checks for bad words and tells you if it finds anything. Admittedly, this is a pretty strange problem, but it’s something that people are noticing on the Play Store. If you’d like to avoid having your changelog chopped up into unfortunate phrasing, check out the project on GitHub below.
On the Google Issue Tracker, a Google employee confirmed that the issue has now been resolved. Play Store changelogs should no longer be awkwardly split in the middle.