Google Play Store now open for Progressive Web Apps

Last updated 169 days ago by Maximiliano Firtman

android

Chrome 72 for Android shipped the long-awaited Trusted Web Activity feature, which means we can now distribute PWAs in the Google Play Store! I played with the feature for a while, digging into the APIs and here you have a summary of what’s going on, what to expect and how to use it today.

This article is an introduction and I’m working in a tutorial series, so if you are interested in that, follow me on Twitter or subscribe to my newsletter.

PWAs can now play in the Store

Chrome 72 for Android is now shipping from the Play Store to all users and this version included Trusted Web Activity (TWA), that in a nutshell is a way to open Chrome in standalone mode (without any toolbar or Chrome UI) within the scope of our own native Android package.

Let me start saying that the publishing process is not straightforward as it should be (such as “enter your URL” in the Play Console and it’s done). It’s also not a way to use the currently available WebAPK and publish it in the store. It’s a Java API that communicates through services with Chrome and seem to be in the early stages, so there is a lot of manual work to do yet today.

I see this as the first step and I’m sure better tooling will appear soon (maybe from the community) using these now available APIs to create a one-click to store mechanism. But with the current API, it’s possible to ship a PWA’s launcher. I will share my experience in this article for everyone interested.

For some reason, the feature doesn’t appear as shipped yet in Chrome Platform Status and there is still no updated documentation available more than the one published 15 months ago.

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