Android Instant apps is a concept by Google that is meant to help users to run parts of Android apps without necessarily installing the whole App APK on their device. The advantage of this is that its saves the user the much limited local storage space. Users are also able to interact with the Android apps instantly without waiting for what may seem like an eternity for an app to download.
It was back at Google I/O 2016 that the Android Instant Apps initiative was previewed. Since then, Google has been working with a small group of developers to refine the user and developer experiences. The good news is that a few of these Android Instant apps are now ready for trails to Android users. To start with, Google has worked with Android developers at Periscope, BuzzFeed, Viki and Wish to make the first Android Instant apps.
“To develop an instant app, you’ll need to update your existing Android app to take advantage of Instant Apps functionality and then modularize your app so part of it can be downloaded and run on-the-fly. You’ll use the same Android APIs and Android Studio project. The full SDK will be available in the coming months.”
In essence, the Android Instant apps will run from the cloud and will also be compatible with devices running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. You are able to use the parts of an app that are necessary at that time because the Android Instant apps are split into modules.
Case Scenario of How Android Instant apps will function
Your friend sends you a link to a product on an online store. Clicking the link will take you to that products page in the store’s app without installing the app first. If you like how the app feels you can then go ahead and download it with a couple of taps while you use the parts you need at the moment.
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