My minor child has 'visited <name of app>' in her Google's My Activity from the Google Play Store multiple times. Does this mean she has/had the app?

She recently got a new phone and was setting it up from her old phone.

This is the actual activity:

Google Play Store
Visited Reddit
Mar 12, 2019, 5:52:48 PM EDT

Google Play Store
Visited Plenty of Fish Free Dating App
Mar 12, 2019, 5:52:48 PM EDT

Google Play Store
Visited Plenty of Fish Free Dating App
Mar 12, 2019, 5:52:37 PM EDT

Google Play Store
Visited Twitter
Mar 12, 2019, 5:52:25 PM EDT

  • Where is Google displaying this information? Also, is it a child Google account linked to your main Google account? Mar 19 at 19:28
  • It’s In her google activity from the google play store
    – Angelica
    Mar 19 at 22:57
  • Are you referring to the Google Play store on her Android device? If so, where in the Google Play store app? I looked in the Google Play store app on a couple devices, and I didn't see any history report like that. The closest I found was the "Library" tab in the "My apps and games" section, but the data wasn't presented like in your question. Mar 20 at 1:44
  • @RockPaperLz-MaskitorCasket Probably from Google's My Activity
    – Andrew T.
    Mar 20 at 3:11
  • @AndrewT. Thanks. I'll take a look at that UI. Mar 20 at 6:25

No, Google's My Activity showing "Visited <name of app>" on Google Play Store doesn't mean that the app has been installed. It literally just means that the app detail has been seen on the Google Play Store app, regardless if it's installed or not. In fact, My Activity doesn't even add any entry for app installation, so there's no way to know if an app is installed from there.

Alternative ways to know are:

  • Searching for "Used <name of app>" in My Activity instead
  • Browsing Google Play Store's My Apps. It lists apps that have been installed at one time unless the entry has been manually removed by the user from the Play Store app
  • Based on what you wrote, it sounds like - at the least - the child clicked on the dating app and Google showed a full description of it. Whether or not the child installed the app or visited their website requires more investigation by the parent(s). What's really lacking, in my opinion, is that Google shouldn't even be offering age-inappropriate apps to children. Does Google have a good way to prevent that from happening? Mar 20 at 6:25
  • A note to Angelica: To my knowledge, anyone with control of their own Google account can delete all data from that portion of Google's account logs (whether or not they truly delete it, or just hide it from you, I doubt anyone outside of Google really knows). So although it may be useful for you to know when something is shown there, the absence of data is not indicative of an absence of activity. Andrew or someone else can likely either confirm this, or correct any errors in my conclusions. Mar 20 at 6:40
  • Thanks so much everyone!
    – Angelica
    Mar 21 at 16:54

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