How do I remove Google Play Music from my Android?

Google Play Music is a streaming service and music locker operated by Google. It was launched in November 2011, but in 2020 Google announced that Google Play Music would be shutting down later in the year as the company shifts its focus to YouTube Music.[1]

With Google Play Music getting discontinued, many Android users will want to fully remove the app and any associated files or data from their devices. This article will provide a step-by-step guide on how to completely delete Google Play Music and eliminate all traces of it from an Android phone or tablet.

Delete the App

To remove Google Play Music, the first step is deleting the app itself. Here’s how to uninstall it from your Android device:

Open the Settings app and go to the Apps or Application Manager menu. On Android 9 and lower, go to Settings > Apps & Notifications > App Info. On Android 10 and higher, go to Settings > Apps & Notifications > See All Apps.

Find Google Play Music in the list of apps. Tap on it to open the app info.

Select Uninstall. Confirm by tapping OK or Uninstall again.

This will delete the Google Play Music app from your device. However, there may still be leftover files, caches, and account associations that need to be removed. We’ll cover those next.

Remove Leftover Files

Once you have deleted the Play Music app, you’ll want to check for any leftover files and folders that may still be taking up storage space. One option for finding them is using a file manager app to browse your Android’s internal storage:

To do this, install a file manager app like Music Folder Player or a similar app from the Play Store. Open up the manager and look under /sdcard/Android/data or other root folders for any leftover folders or files related to Play Music.

If you find any old Play Music folders or files, you can tap and delete them. This will help free up any storage space they were still taking up. Once you have checked the likely locations and removed any leftovers, you can be assured the app and its data have been fully uninstalled.

Turn Off Auto-Updates

Google automatically updates many apps on your Android phone, including Google Play Music. While automatic updates keep your apps up to date and secure, it can interfere with your efforts to fully remove Play Music. To stop Google Play Music from updating itself:

Go to the Google Play Store app. Under the options menu (the 3 lines) in the top left corner, go to “Settings” and then tap on “Auto-update apps.” Here you will find a list of all your installed apps that get updated automatically. Find “Play Music” in this list and turn off auto-updates. This will prevent Play Music from reinstalling itself after you remove it.

Disabling auto-updates can also help save data usage according to this article. However, other sources like MakeUseOf recommend keeping auto-updates on in general for security reasons. So consider selectively disabling auto-updates only for apps you wish to remove like Play Music.

Remove Account Associations

To fully remove Google Play Music, it is important to dissociate any Google accounts connected to the app. Here is how:

  1. Go to your Android device’s Settings app.
  2. Select Accounts.
  3. Look for any Google accounts with “Play Music” listed under them. Tap on them.
  4. Select Remove account and confirm to dissociate the Google account from Play Music.

Clear Cache and Data

Google Play Music app stores cached data and cache files during normal use. This includes buffers of songs for playback, partial downloads, temporary app files, and more. Over time, the Play Music app cache and data can accumulate and take up significant storage on your device. You should clear the cache and data to remove temporary app files and recover space.

To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Settings app on your Android device. Tap “Apps” or “Applications.”
  2. Scroll down and tap on “Google Play Music.”
  3. Tap “Storage.”
  4. Tap “Clear Cache.” This deletes the app’s temporary cache files.
  5. Tap “Clear Data.” This deletes all remaining app data.

Clearing cache and data removes alldownloads, offline song caches, partial streams, and other temporary Play Music files no longer needed. However, this does not delete your library or account information. You music collection and playlists will be restored the next time you sign in. So clearing cache/data is safe to do as needed.

Remove Downloads

To ensure no leftover music files remain, check your device storage for a Downloads or Music folder where Google Play Music may have stored songs for offline listening.

On Android devices, offline music is often saved in the folder /sdcard/Music or /sdcard/Downloads/Music. You can navigate here through your device’s native file explorer.

Delete any files or folders related to Google Play Music stored in these locations. This will remove all cached and offline music content.

According to users on Reddit and Android forums, offline Google Play Music files are typically found in these downloads folders if you ever chose to save songs offline. Clearing these folders will ensure no music remains from the app.

Remove Widgets

To fully remove Google Play Music, you’ll also want to delete any widgets related to the app from your home screens. To do this:

Long press on a home screen and select “Widgets” from the menu. Browse through the available widgets and remove any related to Google Play Music by tapping and holding on them, then dragging them up to the “Remove” bar at the top.

Some common Google Play Music widgets to look out for include the Basic Music Playback widget and Recommended Music widget. Removing these will help delete the last visible traces of Google Play Music from your device.

Check each home screen page and remove all Google Play Music widgets you find. This will completely clear them from your Android device.

Source: Music Widget Android 12 – Apps on Google Play

Double Check Removal

After uninstalling Play Music and removing extra files, it’s important to do a thorough search of your device to ensure that no traces are left behind:

1. Use File Manager to search your device storage for any folders, files or references to Play Music

2. Open your device’s file explorer and ensure none of your music libraries or playlists contain any content that originated from Play Music.

You may have to go through multiple directories and delete any remaining Play Music songs or data.

Alternative Music Apps

With Google Play Music shutting down, many users are looking for alternative music apps and services to transfer their music libraries and playlists. Some of the most popular Google Play Music replacement options include:

Spotify – Spotify is one of the most popular music streaming services, with a large catalog of over 50 million songs and an extensive set of features like playlists and recommendations. According to Reddit users, Spotify is the top replacement choice given its similarity to Google Play Music.

YouTube Music – YouTube Music is Google’s official Google Play Music replacement, allowing users to transfer their libraries, playlists, purchases, and recommendations seamlessly. As a YouTube-based service, it offers official songs, albums, playlists and artist radio stations.

Amazon Music – For Prime members, Amazon Music offers ad-free streaming with over 2 million songs available. Users can upload their own music to the cloud with storage space available for purchased Amazon Music tracks.

There are many additional options like Apple Music, Tidal, Deezer and Pandora that also allow streaming music libraries, cloud storage, and other comparable features.

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