What Does Android Instant Apps Means For Users And Developers?
Most of the apps on our phone are used only occasionally. Some situations require a particular app, and we download and quickly install it. But then they are just forgotten about until we need them again which may be never. This brings us to the questions as to why we need to download an app just to use it once. Google has risen to the occasion and came up with a solution to this issue. Android Instant apps are the answer, which will help us to use an app without actually downloading it completely.
These instant apps are a feature that is available only for Android. It lets the consumers use an app without the user having to download it on their phones. You can find them on play store and click Open App. You can download some of their functionality and for features that are not installed, just tap on the URL. This will let you access a specific activity that you want to use without downloading it completely.
The Android instant apps are available just for Nexus and Pixel devices as of now. But soon Google is going to roll these apps for every android user.
In this article, we will learn more about these applications. Their role and importance for both users and developers are crucial for us to understand. We will also check out the instant apps list of 2018. This will help us in knowing how many developers have already started designing them.
How to use Android Instant Apps?
There are two ways to use Android instant apps:
- On mobile device– To access instant apps on smartphones, just turn on the option in its setting. Right now only Nexus and Pixel device user can try them. Other Android users will have to wait a little longer.
- Through a URL– You can open instant apps through a URL too. This extends the experience we gain from web browser and let us share them from within the apps.
What will Instant Apps mean for the users?
As a user, what the implementation of instant app will mean for you. Is it something that will help you or it is just a phase which won’t affect you anyhow. Let’s find out below:
1. Exciting and game changer
Android instant apps are a game changer, and it will change the way we use our devices. It is exciting, that we need not download such apps that we use once or twice. As they just take space in the phone, with these apps our phone would be free of apps that we don’t require every day.
2. It streamlines the process of installing and uninstalling apps
We install an app and uninstall it after some time because we need it once only. It is not a hard task, but still, it is tedious. Also, if we forgot to delete unwanted apps, our phone will work slowly as apps are too much.
With instant apps, this process has become streamlined. It saves time and installing apps that we need just for once makes it more efficient.
3. It lets us use a particular feature without installing
If the user wants to use a specific feature of the app, this app has that option too. You can just tap on the URL, and you will land on the specific page that you need. This requires no installation or downloading.
Example: If you tap a parking meter on your phone, this will instantly open the payment page of the parking app.
If you are playing a crossword puzzle and want your friend to play it too. Just share the link on Whatsapp, the link will directly open that page.
4. Instant apps will make web browsing more seamless
Web browsing will be seamless in the future as sites will keep switching between web pages and apps. The future of instant apps is bright; it will let us use links to launch such apps even from different developers.
Android instant apps are a step towards evolution and a better online future. The data plans also provide a lot of data and there is also the cloud storage facility. This will help people in the future with downloading and installing only a part of app.
“Read Also: 6 Benefits of Android App Development”
Do Instant apps have security concerns?
As a user, it is obvious that we might be worried about our security. As this app can be temporarily installed via a URL or play store, it’s hard to trust it.
The concerns are:
- The instant apps may charge them for using their services.
- The URL may have a virus
Well, I am here to tell you that this won’t happen.
- This is because no app can charge you or use your contacts if you don’t give it permission.
- The apps that are used through URL are also safe because they are protected by HTTPS protocol.
- Moreover, there is a signing process just like for installed apps. This use smart lock which means without user’s permission, the app can’t use any personal details of the user.
- Limitations of instant apps for users
Android instant apps have some limitations for a user, let’s check them out:
- It doesn’t support background services like push notification, external storage access and so on.
- Instant apps have a limitation when it comes to their file size. Only 4 MB per app’s feature or page can be downloaded for one app. This means that the creator can’t make the light-weight app more feature rich.
- Instant gaming apps can be simple quizzed or basic 2D apps. Currently, developers can’t create 3D gaming instant apps.
- Also, this service is not available for IOS. So, businesses may not be able to cater to some section of their audience. This means IOS users will have to wait for doe Apple to come up with something like this.
Instant Apps- Good or bad for business?
- For businesses, Instant apps are a great opportunity. It is a tool that will help them get more user engagement and increased sales.
- It will let websites link more dynamic content for mobile users. This will aware the user about in-app purchases, location and so on.
- Instant apps bring more visibility and traffic for the app. The reason behind this is that they can be shared using links on social media.
- A negative review from the user is less likely to show on the app’s page.
The future of instant apps is bright. Thus, businesses will have to invest in them for the success of their apps. But for businesses that earn money from ads or the frequency of the users, it might pose a problem. Also, since they are not part of IOS, some web pages might not involve them in their marketing strategy. Thus, a business will also have to think about this factor before thinking about developing instant apps.
Instant Apps list
The idea of instant apps was penned down by Google in 2016. In 2017, Buzzfeed and Viki apps debuted their instant app design. But now, Google has launched many such apps. Here is the Instant apps list of 2018:
- Castbox – – Free Podcast & Audio
- Wheel of Fortune: Free Play
- NYTimes – Crossword
- Buzzfeed: News
- Candy Crush Saga
- Defender III
- Red bull TV: Live sports
- Words with friends 2- word game
- Panda Pop
- ShareTheMeal- Help Children
- Bubble witch3 saga
- World Tour
As we can see from the instant apps list of 2018 many developers accepted this change. What about you? As a user do you see potential, and advantage of using Android Instant applications? They certainly possess appeal and its user engagement will certainly increase. For developers, it can be game changer, so do think about this.