Back in July we reported you that Google to make Play Store app updates smaller, now again they have started reducing app updates up to 90%.
Android users are downloading tens of billions of apps and games on Google Play. Google is also seeing developers update their apps frequently in order to provide users with great content, improve security, and enhance the overall user experience. It takes a lot of data to download these updates and Google knows user care about how much data their devices are using. Earlier this year, Google announced that they started using the bsdiff algorithm (by Colin Percival). Using bsdiff, Google were able to reduce the size of app updates on average by 47% compared to the full APK size.
Today, Google is excited to share a new approach that goes further — File-by-File patching. App Updates using File-by-File patching are, on average, 65% smaller than the full app, and in some cases more than 90% smaller.
Google on File by File Patching:
File-by-File therefore is based on detecting changes in the uncompressed data. To generate a patch, we first decompress both old and new files before computing the delta (we still use bsdiff here). Then to apply the patch, we decompress the old file, apply the delta to the uncompressed content and then recompress the new file. In doing so, we need to make sure that the APK on your device is a perfect match, byte for byte, to the one on the Play Store (see APK Signature Schema v2 for why).
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