Learn All About the 64-bit Requirement Applicable for Android Apps from August 1, 2019 - Coffee with CIS - Latest News & Articles

Learn All About the 64-bit Requirement Applicable for Android Apps from August 1, 2019

Are you aware of the latest development in the world of Android applications? From 1st of August 2019, all new applications as well as application updates on Google Play store will need to compulsorily provide support for 64-bit architectures.

Having only a 32-bit version application will no longer be enough. The apps will now need to have 32-bit as well as 64-bit versions on Google Play store. The hint of this development was given by Google way back in December 2017. At that time, this was more of a recommendation by Google, where Google urged that Android apps should have 64-bit versions. But now, from August 1, 2019, this will become a mandatory requirement.

The rationale behind this new rule is simple. 64-bit CPU architectures are superior when it comes to performance. Therefore, Android applications will be able to deliver much better and faster performance on these architectures. Moreover, in the future we may see emergence of devices that feature hardware supporting 64-bit only. Ensuring that Android applications support 64-bit architectures today will help ensure that the apps are ready to work on these future hardware innovations.

If you are planning to submit an Android application in the near future, it’s important that you hire Android developer who can help build 64-bit version of your application. The rule that will be applicable from 1st August of this year says that if the application or application update features native code, then it needs to have both, a 64-bit version and a 32-bit version. So if an application consists of C/C++ coding or is somehow linked to 3rd party native libraries, then having both versions of the app would become necessary.

But if the application only features code in Java or Kotlin, then there is no requirement for any additional effort since such an app would already be suitable for 64-bit architectures. What the rule is essentially trying to say is that any Android app that has a 32-bit native code, would now need to be accompanied by a 64-bit version too.

In case you find that your Android app needs work done in order to comply with the new rule, it’s time to act now and reach out to an Android development company for assistance. You can talk to your mobile app development company about how you can keep your apps relevant and compliant with the rule that is poised to begin a new era for Android apps.

  • To give you a little sketch of the measures that will enable you to comply with the new 64-bit rule, here’s some basic information for you:
  • You will need to enable the 64-bit architectures. If you have imported any native code within your application code, then the native code is something that you will have to rebuild.
  • To check for the presence of native code, you will need to perform a thorough analysis of the app bundle or APK. You can take the help of APK Analyzer if you want to inspect for any .so files. There are two possible reasons for the presence of .so files.

Read the blog- What new should be in Upcoming Android OS Version, Android Q

One is that the files were created from your code itself. Second is that the files were imported by a library or SDK that has been used. If the .so files are absent altogether from the APK, then there’s a good chance that your application is ready for 64-bit.

  • Remember to check if you have any libraries or SDKs that need upgradation to comply with the 64-bit requirement.
  • Finally, when you have done all the rebuilding required it’s time to perform a comprehensive testing to catch and resolve any issues in time. You have to make sure that the 64-bit version of your mobile app offers the same kind of experience as the 32-bit version of the app, whether it is in terms of features or quality being offered. So it’s important that you get a device with 64-bit architecture and then test your app extensively on this device.

Above was just a basic description of how you can start preparing for ensuring adherence with the new rule. Consulting with a mobile app development company about this can help you understand it all even better.

Conclusion

This new rule that will be enforced into action from August 1, 2019 takes into consideration matters like providing enhanced experiences for mobile users and preparing for the hardware advancements that we are likely to see in the future. The best time to act is now. Because soon, as in from August 1, 2021, the apps that don’t have 64-bit versions will not be served by Google Play on 64-bit hardware devices. So if you have an app in 32-bit version only, then from August 1, 2021 your app will simply not be made available on the Google Play store to the 64-bit devices. In such a scenario, you may end up losing out on a huge chunk of user base.

Avoiding these issues is simple enough. You just need to make sure that your new Android apps or Android app updates (featuring native code) have 32-bit and 64-bit versions both. By just ensuring this simple step, you can make sure that your application is ready for all the changes coming up ahead. Talk to your Android development company as soon as possible to take all the requisite measures to prepare for the date August 1, 2019.