New technology is developing fast in this day and age. However, it always takes its share of time before actually making it to widespread activity. Google is not known to advocate radical changes and cut off on traditional technology ruthlessly unlike Apple. However, they might be trying to do something similar in the case of their Android apps. In the near future, all Android developers will be required to provide 64-bit compatibility to the apps and updates they develop from now on. Let us look at this news in a bit more detail.
Taking Out The Old, Coming in With The New
Google decided to convey its 64-bit requirement through a post on the Android Developers Blog on the 15 January.
“All new apps and app updates that include native code are required to provide 64-bit versions in addition to 32-bit versions when publishing to Google Play”.
Even so, this was not the only noteworthy item in the blog post. To avoid any kind of immediate panic that may trigger among Android app developers, Google has clarified that the support to 32-bit only updates to existing games that built with Unity 5.6 or older would be continued until August 2021.
This means that Google is planning to do away with the 32-bit apps once and for all by August 2021.
One other notable thing is the Unity version. Come 2021, not only will Google Play will stop serving apps without 64-bit versions on 64-bit capable devices, the games developed with Unity 5.6 or older will be scrapped as well.
Why 64-bit Over 32-bit?
The answer to this is pretty simple. 64-bit processors outrank the 32-bit processors in terms of efficiency and speed. Hence, 64-bit apps and updates have an obvious advantage over their 32-bit counterparts. In addition to that, 64-bit processors are not cutting edge technology anymore. They’ve been around since 2015 when Qualcomm first introduced them through its Snapdragon 810 and 808 chipset. Hence, they’re expected to present in most cell-phones released in the last 2-3 years.
Is Google Really Doing An Apple Here?
Apple has often been criticized for its policy of rapid adoption of new technology and quick discarding the old one in the process, no matter how relevant it would be in the present market. Even then, it is not the same as what Google is trying to do. 32-bit processors are getting outdated pretty fast. Most cell phones today are using the 64-bit processors anyway. Hence, Google is just flicking on the kill switch with its August 2021 deadline. As of now, it is not wrong to submit apps and games with 32-bit compatible native code. It is still going to be delivered to the 32-bit devices. It is just that they will have to submit another 64-bit version of it as well.