1. What exactly are Android Instant Apps?
Ever since Google announced its Instant Apps, the tech world has been caught up in this fascinating new topic. So what is this new discovery? According to Google, “Android Instant Apps enables Android apps to run instantly, without requiring installation. Instant Apps let you experience what you love about apps — fast and beautiful user interfaces, high performance, and great capabilities — with just a tap.”
How convenient would it be to be able to search on Google for specific pages, and then having suggested applications mixed in as a result as well?
To be able to have applications that run on an only-as-you-need it basis is quite revolutionary. Search for what you want, click the app and start using a version of it for what you need right then and there.
There will be no need to wait for downloads or to take up unnecessary space on your smartphone. We don’t always know what we want when it comes to apps and we don’t always know if we will use it as much as we plan to. With Android Instant Apps, you will have the ability to try and test your app before purchasing it.
You can compare the features of Android Instant Apps with this available option to get a real taste of what you want to download, before actually downloading or purchasing it. The idea is pretty simple. Instead of choosing the “download” option for an app you want to try out, you can simply click on a URL link that will allow you to have a preview of the app with limited capabilities.
This only works if the app has an instant app version. It’s important to keep in mind that for the full benefits and features, you will still have to download it. But it’s great to have access to the functionalities and idea of the app without having to actually download it.
We are in a world of convenience and Android Instant Apps are paving the way for all apps in the upcoming years. Google VP Dave Burke mentioned that the idea behind Instant Apps is to make the app experience as convenient as surfing to a web site.
2. What is the potential development for Instant Apps?
We can begin to expect a lot of growth in the area of applications. Big changes are being made and it’s only a matter of time until they are in the hands and pockets of the public. Instant Apps are also already suggesting interesting practical ideas to build upon. For example, Google demonstrated a situation where Google Instant Apps can be used to pay for parking. Rather than downloading an app in the parking lot, users can place their phone against a wireless chip on the parking meter. With this, the user will be able to quickly pay for the parking with Android Pay, and the app would disappear when it is no longer in use or needed.
In today’s fast world, more people have smartphones yet less people are downloading apps. Why? Limited phone storage space is always a problem. Google recognizes this and tends to this matter by offering us this solution of Instant Apps, where we can use app like features when we need it. It makes sense. No one wants to download an app, use up storage space, and use it only once every few months.
Instant Apps can also help developers bypass the difficulties of the app store. Nowadays the app world is a very competitive place, so it takes a lot of hard work to get people to install new versions or to climb the rankings. Instead of going through this torture, developers can now just simply copy, paste, and share the direct Instant App link to social media sites such as Twitter.
3. What are the benefits?
- More Downloads
With Android Instant Apps, it will be much more easier for users to find out whether they like an app or not right away. It seems that one of the biggest challenges in app marketing is getting users to commit to purchasing and downloading an app. No more waiting for downloading and installing. They will be able to get the app and experience it has to offer before deciding whether or not they really want it in the long run.
- Being Discovered
Instant Apps are going to bridge the gap between web searches and getting users to the app store. The Instant Apps are functioning like both a web page and an app combined. It works similar to web pages in a way that it can be launched from anywhere. Improving discovery always was one of the main challenges in app promotion.
- Simple for Developers
Google promises that developers will be able to adapt easily to Instant Apps, since the existing app will just need an Instant Apps layer. The app can be packaged as one download or it can be bundled into chunks. However, the idea is not for developers to create entirely new apps. Developers will need to create two builds: the normal app version and the instant version. According to Google, skilled developers can finish the process for many apps in a day or less, but it largely depends on the complexity of the app itself.
4. What are the potential disadvantages?
- Adoption problems for large enterprises
Large enterprises may face difficulties with maintaining Instant Apps because the team responsible for the native app is often fragmented from the rest of the company. The amount of stress to integrate the team may be a hassle in itself. In general, it seems large companies may not be too keen on the new life of Instant Apps since they already have to maintain a mobile website and a full native app.
In relation to this, some companies are able to avoid these issues all together. Some clients will never face this problem if they don’t have to integrate their team of developers. Their developers team will already be remote and will be able to get technical support if needed and at any time. This is another advantage of outsourcing.
- Reduced user engagement
For the time being, Google also shares that Instant Apps are limited in space (4mb). Because of this, users can only use the application partially and it won’t give them the full user experience that the original version of the app can provide. However, this may encourage the user to download the app if they like their initial experiences.
Android Instant Apps may potentially reduce the engagement of users since most situations only require users to have the app for a short period of time to get what they need. However, the reduced engagement can be balanced by better discovery and user awareness of your brand.
To learn more about outsourcing read our previous articles:
What can we take away about Instant Apps?
It seems that there are great opportunities for users and for app developers. Google Instant Apps is still a pretty fresh concept and it will slowly make its way out on the market as well as to the public. We can expect significant growth of this innovation technology in future, but at the moment we just wait for new announces from Google.