Android App Bundle (.aab) and Android Application Package (.apk)
What is the Android App Bundle?
.aab is an Android app dissemination format that was introduced in 2018 and is supported by Google Play and other app stores.
What is the Android Application Package?
.apk is the file that contains all the resources and code required for an app to run on an Android device.
Why Did Google Introduce .aab?
The main reason here is the ever-increasing application sizes. The sizes naturally increase as businesses/developers add new features to their applications. Increasing application sizes also negatively affect the number of downloads.
.aabs are for publishing purposes only and cannot be installed on Android devices. APKs are the packaging format that will be installed on the device.
When a .aab is uploaded to Google Play, it generates optimized APKs for each device configuration via the Google Play bundletool. Thus, users get smaller and optimized downloads as only as much code and resources are downloaded as needed to run the application.
Key Advantages of .aab over APK
- Smaller app sizes with .aab
- Faster download
- Using dynamic features
- Only resources required for the user device can be downloaded
You can review the resources below for more information.
- About Android App Bundles | Android Developers
- The Android App Bundle format | Android Developers
- A new publishing format for the future of Android