Google Play Services

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Google Play Services is a proprietary software development kit (SDK) and application programming interface (API) set for Android devices. First introduced in 2012, the layer provides APIs that allow apps for Android to provide functionality that directly integrates with Google services, such as account syncing, Google+ (sharing, single sign-on), Google Maps, Location APIs, Google Play Games, Cloud Messaging, Android Device Manager, and others. Google Play Services is a dependency of all Google applications for Android.

Although it acts as a system-level process, it can automatically be updated through Google Play Store, and is automatically installed on any Android device that runs Android 2.2 or higher. As a result, Google can update certain aspects of Android independently of the operating system itself, combating the "fragmentation" and inconsistent availability of new OS versions on certain devices, an issue that the platform had become infamous for.[1][2]

Google Play Services are often referred internally as Google Mobile Services (GMS) in developer documentation.[3]


Version 1.0 was released on September 26, 2012.[4]