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Google Unveils Android Instant Apps SDK 1.1 With Improved Features

October 22, 2017
Google has officially released Android Instant Apps SDK 1.1, which brings in configuration APKs for binary size optimization. The SDK also includes a new API to activate user context during the transition from an instant app to an installed app. If you are unaware, the Instant Apps SDK 1.1 was introduced at Google I/O 2017. The Instant Apps SDK 1.1 can be upgraded from within the SDK Manager in Android Studio.

The main highlight of the instant apps is the decreased file size. According to reports, the search-engine giant is making an effort to separate device-specific resources and native libraries into APKs that are independent. The purpose to isolate resources is to keep the size of the file to below 4MB mark.

The APKs are loaded by the Android Instant Apps SDK only when they are relevant to the device. As of this writing, APKs for the display density, CPU architecture and language are supported. Google estimates that the effort will decrease the size of the binary file by 10%.

The Android Instant Apps SDK 1.1 provides support for persistent user context, which is very much required for older Android versions. The installed app will be able to access the internal storage of its counterpart. This allows users to save any vital information they are created during the installation of the app.

With Android Instant Apps SDK 1.1, the installed apps will be able to call InstantAppsClient.getInstantAppData() to retrieve a zip file of the internal storage. The new version provides support for Marshmallow, Nougat, and Lollipop.

The Instant Apps is more or less similar to that of deep linking. It mainly works by splitting a standard Android application into modules. It will load only when the user picks a particular action. It is possible to perform a wide range of action without having to install the application. The SDK is mainly designed to ensure a seamless transition between various apps.