Mobile apps have become a part of the user experience culture, there’s almost an app for everything and anything. Though to get the apps you have to search them, download them, and then install them. This can be daunting for some but mostly is an already convenient approach, but Google wants to take it a step further and redefine what apps are and how users interact with them. Googles solution Instant Apps.
Instant Apps were announced today during Google I/O developer conference. Its a new Android feature that will allow users to use native apps instantly. This new feature allows developers to partition their apps into small parts that are able to start within seconds. The apps are meant to also replace mobile sites. Google demonstrated this by giving an example of paying for parking. You place your phone near the parking meter, the phones built-in NFC chip read the info, and the native app pops up speedily. If you close the instant app it disappears and stays in the cache for a few hours. For developers Instant Apps are built using existing apps, so users can download only necessary parts of the app instead of the entire app. Developers will need to use Android M or Android N permissions to make these apps and they cannot exceed 4MB.
One interesting thing is that Instant Apps will work on Android Jelly Bean devices and up, it’s not specifically for Android N. Google wants most of their users to be able to take advantage of Instant Apps. They are also compatible with Android app links to be able to launch Instant Apps through existing links, using Google Play services. So those devices that don’t have Google Play wont be able to use Instant Apps.