The Adjust Mobile Measurement Glossary

Related terms

Instant Apps


What are instant apps?

Instant apps allow users to access content from an app without installing. They are designed to save users space on their device for apps and conveniently deep link users to an app’s specific function. They are also only available for Android.

When Android instant apps were first announced, Google used a parking meter app as an example of what they have to offer. There are potentially few users who would keep a parking meter app on their device, but its functions can be really useful on certain occasions.

If the user is able to access this as an instant app, they can immediately use the app’s capabilities without signup or install. They can make a purchase with just a few clicks as long as the necessary payment details have been entered into Android pay.

Google Play Instant also gives users the opportunity to try an instant app before they purchase and install the app in full.

How do instant apps work?

When a user clicks on an instant app’s URL - whether through a link, banner or otherwise - that user will be sent directly into a section of the app. This is possible because the app has been split up into modules, meaning only the code needed to display that module is downloaded. So, technically, an instant app is still downloaded onto the device, but this works much like a mobile browser because the app is cached once it’s closed.

For example, let’s say you’re looking for a new TV. It’s unlikely that you regularly shop for TVs, so you probably don’t have an app purely for that purpose. But if you browse Google for the model of your choice, you can be deeplinked into an app’s product page for that item. Only the code for that product page was downloaded, so you can seamlessly entered the app and make the purchase at your leisure.

Are instant apps optional for Android users?

All Android users can toggle instant apps on or off in their settings. Android instant apps also require Android Lollipop (API 21) or higher to function.

Adjust and Instant Apps

From user behavior to the nature of apps, Instant Apps have the potential to profoundly change the industry. And currently, Adjust are the only mobile measurement provider able to track Instant Apps. This means we can provide our clients with tracking for a larger piece of the market than ever before. So, if you’re currently testing Instant Apps, please get in contact with us to start a trial. Our sales and support teams would also be pleased to discuss Instant Apps (and how to track them) in greater depth.

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