Google Play’s New Algorithm Reduces Android Update Sizes  

Google recently announced that it has included a brand new algorithm in the Google Play Store that will reduce the overall size of the updates for Android apps. The apps’ sizes, as well as the update sizes will be visible to the users, henceforth.

According to Google, around 65 billion apps were downloaded last year from the Google Play Store, and users are constantly updating their apps to benefit from them. But, what about those users who are not connected to the Wi-Fi? Would they be as enthusiastic about updating their apps regularly? The algorithm, called bsdiff, is specifically targeted at such users who are sensitive to the amount of data they use. Through this algorithm, Google is hoping to reduce the overall data required for Google play app installs and updates, and make the data consumption transparent to the users.

Up until now, only the size of the app that was downloaded was displayed. The updates take up data, and the amount of data consumed was never visible to the user. Going forward, the platform will display the exact overall size of the app in the app’s detail box on Google Play. This makes it convenient for users to fully understand what they are getting into, and freeing up space from their phones to accommodate certain apps. Through this update, 98 percent of the app updates will only download the changes between the current (downloaded) version and the new (about to be updated) version. This change makes a reduction on update sizes by up to 50 percent. The new algorithm will also reduce the large app size by up to 12 percent, and is being used on the “APK Expansion Files”, which allows users to include additional large files of up to 2 GB in size.

Here is an example of how Google Play will display the app update size in its platform.


With increased transparency and reduced app sizes, both users and developers will benefit from the new and improved feature set of Google Play.

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