Android will soon let you archive apps to save space

Google is working on Android with a new feature called Archive, which lets you archive certain apps to help free up space on your device, partially uninstalling apps until you need them again.

One of the main reasons users remove apps is to free up space, Google said. To prevent unnecessary uninstalls and help users get more out of their devices, we’ve started working on a new feature that will enable app archiving.

She added: Archiving is a new functionality that allows users to recover approximately 60 percent of the app’s cache space by removing parts of the app rather than uninstalling it completely. The archived application remains on the device and can be easily restored to the latest available compatible version while preserving user data.

  • In a blog post, Google explains that any app with the feature allows you to partially uninstall it, shrinking the app’s size by about 60 percent without removing it completely.
  • With the release of the upcoming version of Bundletool 1.10, Google is taking the first step towards making archiving available to all developers who use app bundles.
  • For apps built with Android Gradle Plugin 7.3, the company starts by creating a new type of APK – archived APK files.
  • Archived APKs are very small APK files that keep user data until the app is restored.

And while Google starts creating archived APKs now, it won’t work until the archiving functionality launches to consumers later this year.

Once launched, archiving provides significant benefits to both users and developers. Instead of uninstalling the app, users are able to archive it, freeing up some space temporarily, and being able to reactivate the app quickly and easily.

Android allows you to free up space without uninstalling apps

Developers can take advantage of fewer uninstalls and fewer steps to restore their apps.

All APK files are available for download and inspection through the Generated APKs API or in the Play Console within the App Bundle Explorer.

  • And since the functionality is open source, developers are able to scan the code. Other app stores can also make use of it. Developers can also choose to opt-out of archived APK files.
  • There are currently no details on how the feature will be offered on Android. It may appear next to the Uninstall option when you long-press the app icon.
  • Archived APKs are meant to be useful for anyone who has a lot of apps that are rarely used.
  • Archiving and restoring the app should be much faster than reinstalling it. And you’re likely to use much less mobile data when you’re not connected to the wireless network.

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