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I would like to know if there is a way to prevent the auto-install of apps when switching to a new phone / device. Going in and uninstalling apps is a bit of a pain and I'd like to avoid it. I did not see any option to prevent this on the google play website (which is where I expected to find it).

Similar question, but not the same; it deals specifically with ROM switching: How can I prevent Android from auto-installing all of my apps?

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I finally got an answer for this by contacting google, so here goes:

  1. On your old / current phone, open the Play store app
  2. Go to "My Apps"
  3. Select the "ALL" tab
  4. Scroll and click the gray "X" next to the app to prevent its install on the new phone

This does not delete the apps from your Play account; you can install the apps at your convenience via the Play store web interface and purchased apps don't need to be re-purchased.

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