In this guide we will be discussing what is an Android App Bubble (AAB). If you are an Android user, you would have surely heard of the term APK and you probably already know what an APK is.
But recently an other similar term, Android App Bubble or AAB is becoming more prominent. So what is an Android App Bubble and how does it differ from an APK file? And the more important question, whether AABs will replace APK files or not? We will discuss all this in the guide below. Read on!
What Are Android App Bundles?
Talks about Android App Bubble started surfacing when Google announced that from the August of 2021, all of the android apps that are published on the Google Play store must follow the AAB format.
Before this, Google allowed developers to use either the older APK format for their apps or the AAB format. So how does an Android App Bubble exactly work and what is the difference between an AAB and an APK file?
As you would already know, that APK files or Android App Package files are used to install apps on Android devices.
An APK file is a .ZIP file that mainly comprises of various files and codes that are required in order to make a particular app to work.
All of these files and codes are downloaded and installed on your device even if they are not really required.
Coming to an AAB file, it also contains all of those files and assets that are found inside an APK file. But in addition to that, AABs also consist of other parts and components that are called “Dynamic Features” and “Asset Packs”.
These newer features are not found in APKs and bring in man advantages. These advantages is a major reason behind why Google is shifting to AABs as the new standard.
Another way to put Android App Bundles is that they contain the components to form an APK file. It is made up of files and assets that are required to create an APK file.
Whenever you download an app from the Play store which uses the AAB format, the App bundle makes the APK that is required for your device to run that particular app.
What are the Advantages of Android App Bundles?
There are more than a few advantages in using AABs rather than APKs. As we mentioned earlier, APK files download assets and files on your device even if they are not needed by your device.
This means that there are extra files which take up more space on your device. Android App Bundles significantly remove this issue as they contain the files to create an APK.
When an APK is created by an AAB, it is made specifically for your device which means that there are no unwanted files. This means the files are smaller and take up less space on your device.
In addition to that, you do not even need to download all of the components at once. The “Dynamic Features” that we mentioned earlier allows a smaller app to be made initially.
This means that when you start using the app, it slowly downloads and installs other files that are needed for it to function or when they are later required.
So if there are some features of an app that you do not use, then the files for that feature will not be downloaded on your device.
In conclusion, the major advantage of Android App Bubble is the less space that they require. On top of that they are also smarter versions of APKs which is evident by the fact that initial app installations are easier and that components are gradually installed when there need arises. They are more versatile as compared to APKs and more dynamic.
Will APKs Be Replaced By Android App Bundles?
The announcement made by Google regarding the use of AABs was misinterpreted by many users. Google said that AABs should be used on instead of APKs.
But as we discussed, what AABs essentially do is create APKs for devices so that a particular Android app can be run on that device. The difference is that from August 2021, developers will need to upload AABs to the Google Play Store instead of APKs.
So that was it from our side on what are Android App Bubbles. We hope that you found this guide helpful. Let us know what you think in the comments section below.