What would you think if your mobile app switched back and forth seamlessly with pages and links on the web? What if those lines were blurred between mobile apps and mobile websites? Well, get ready because Google is pushing the boundaries to bring together the app and web experience into one seamless product.
"As Google's I/O developers conference wrapped up last week, they unveiled an ambitious technology feature that allows Android apps send users to specific parts of their app from any web link," said Wesley Farnam, chief digital strategist with The Idea People. "And it works even if you don't have that app installed on your phone."
This unique and exciting Google feature is designed for our mobile app developers that are pushing development boundaries to attract and retain audiences. "They [app developers] believe that more people would use the apps if they didn't have to go through the app download process," added Farnam. "It is also designed to help Google protect their web search platform to keep people from searching via mobile apps."
The new technology is called Instant Apps. - Google
"The new Instant Apps technology works pretty much like the name says," adds Farnam. "App developers get a piece of code from Google that enables the app to open specific pages in the app from the web." This new technology gives Google access to data and users that previously were isolated from the actual web and Google search engine.
"It's really smart technology and a smart business move for Google," said Farnam. "Blurring the lines between apps and mobile web seamlessly brings all worlds of data, entertainment, information and user accounts into an ever-flowing tide of user experience."
Instant Apps is limited to Android devices for now. Google is making Instant Apps work on all phones that run Jellybean mobile software and later versions, avoiding the limited distribution trap that many new Android products fall into.
"Google tested the new Instant Apps with a few of their partners in retail and and media, including Medium and BuzzFeed," said Farnam. "The retail portion of the technology and audience is more valuable to Google and retailers because it can keep customers engaged through the web and app experience."
Here at The Idea People, we are working on a mobile Android app for a hotel chain application and the new app technology can bring a higher level of use to housekeeping and janitorial team members. "The full Instant App access to developers will be later this year," added Farnam. "But we are already 'on the list' to access the code once released to qualified app developers."