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Google is officially rolling out app archiving support

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Following an announcement earlier this year, Google is finally rolling out app archiving support with an update to the Google Play Store. Therefore, giving users the storage and resource-saving benefits of uninstalling without having to set up or log in to apps again. Google says app archiving on Android can offload as much as 60% of the storage space that an app uses.

Google introduced app archiving, which would allow users to uninstall an app through the Play Store, but their devices will store the local data so that if they reinstall the app, they’ll be able to get back to the experience they had before without having to log in again. Thus allowing users who have a budget phone with limited storage to keep more apps without having to worry about storage constraints.

“One of the main reasons users uninstall apps is to free up space,” write Google’s Lidia Gaymond and Vicki Amin, Product Managers at Google Play. “To prevent unnecessary uninstalls and help users get more out of their devices, we started working on [this] new feature.”

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Google says the rollout began on Thursday, and users can now try the app archiving feature with the new Google Play Store update v33.4.

How to use app archiving?

The app archiving feature is available in the Play Store. Therefore, when a user wants to get rid of an app, they will have 2 options, either uninstall it or use the app archiving feature. The Play Store will give users an estimate of how much storage they will save and some additional information when users tap the archive button: “By archiving your apps, Play Store will delete the apps while holding onto your data and documents. When you need the app back, just tap on the app icon to re-download.”

On the home screen, users can place the archived app icon wherever they desire. But the archived app will have a cloud icon on top of it, showing that it’s just a placeholder. Therefore, when a user taps on the archived app, they will be redirected to a download screen where the Play Store will quickly download the resources needed to get the app up and running again. After the download, users can use the app without even needing to grant permission again.

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