Google Play Store is one of the apps that come pre-installed with an Android smartphone. Its online marketplace allows you to download various applications on your phone; besides being an official platform to update apps, it also scans them for malicious activity using its Play Protect function.
If you accidentally deleted the Google Play Store app or you cannot find it anymore on your mobile device, here’s a guide on how to bring it back. However, can you actually uninstall the Play Store? Find out below.
Can Google Play Store be Uninstalled?
Google Play Store cannot be uninstalled on smartphones and tablets that have it pre-installed. However, in some countries where the app is blocked, you can get rid of it permanently.
So, what’s actually happened when you cannot find the Google Play Store? There are a few answers to that, such as you might have disabled or hidden it. Here are a few methods that help you get the Google Play Store back.
How to Restore the Google Play Store
Move from App Drawer to Home Screen
There is a high chance that you have only removed the app from your Home screen. For those unfamiliar with how this works, apps on Android smartphones are present in two different places: app drawer and the Home screen. While the app drawer has all the installed applications, you can keep only the ones you use the most on the Home screen.
To move the Google Play Store back to the Home screen, launch the app drawer. You can usually access it by swiping up on the Home screen or by pressing the designated icon. Look for the Google Play Store icon, then tap and hold it, and drag it to the Home screen. If this doesn’t work, tap and hold it, and select ‘Add to the Home screen’ option.
Check Hidden Apps
Another reason the Google Play Store is missing on your device might be because you have hidden it by mistake. The ‘Hide apps’ option is often available in the launcher settings. Open the launcher and go to its settings menu. There, you’ll find the ‘Hide apps’ section; tap on it and unselect the apps you do not want to hide. In this case, the Google Play Store.
Enable in Settings
While the Google Play Store cannot be uninstalled, it can be disabled. When this happens, the icon will disappear from your device; therefore, you need to re-enable it.
To do so, follow these steps:
- Launch the Settings menu on your phone or tablet and head to ‘Apps & Notifications’ or ‘Application Manager’ or ‘Installed Apps’
- If you do not see the app directly, go to the ‘All Apps’ section.
- Look for the Google Play Store and tap on it
- If the app is disabled, you’ll see the ‘Enable’ option; tap on it to bring it back
Install From APK
If you had previously installed the Google Play Store using an APK file and later you uninstalled it, you need to get it back using the same method. For that, download the app from a trusted source, such as APKMirror.com.
After downloading the file, open it to start the installation process, and grant security permission to install apps from unknown sources. Once the files are installed successfully, the Google Play Store will be back on your device. You can use this method to update the app manually as well.
For more guides for the Google Play Store, check our latest tips here.