Google is breaking down the walls between web sites and apps in a move that aims to make the two sides of mobile almost interchangeable.
For developers, Google's Instant Apps, which were unveiled at Google's I/O conference, the search giant's move offers some interesting possibilities. For Google, breaking down the silos between apps and Web sites means it can bolster monetization.
Instant Apps will download just the code needed to complete an action without an app installation. Technically these are deep links.
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Here's an Instant App that appears after clicking on a buy button from a site.
As noted by CNET, Google's Instant Apps aim to do the following:
Google's Instant Apps will be a limited preview and then roll out to more developers. The first Instant Apps will appear later in 2016. Instant Apps are enabled via Google Play Services.
Either way the concept of breaking an app interoperable with a web site has a lot of implications for developers and enterprises.
Among the key takeaways:
Bottom line: Melding the web and app experiences is long overdue. Despite the promise of HTML5 there's still a gap between the app and web experiences. Google's biggest challenge will be to make the hopping from web site to app features as seamless as possible. Instant Apps is a good step in the right direction.