Cornershop is a popular on-demand grocery delivery app active in Chile, Mexico, Peru and Canada, offering delivery from dozens of supermarkets and specialty stores in 60 minutes or less. Founded in 2015 in Santiago, Chile, the company has since grown to more than 300 employees with offices in Mexico City, Lima, and Toronto.
Because Cornershop primarily serves users in areas where many devices have low storage, it was important to keep the app size small. Or to put it another way: “Size matters,” said Cristopher Oyarzú, Android Lead at Cornershop. “We have to care for our users from the moment they decide to download the app, and one important aspect is the app size. A smaller app is much more attractive to download with mobile data, especially in Mexico and Chile.”
The modularization benefits of Android App Bundles appealed to Cornershop, too. “Modularizing an app has a lot of benefits for both developers and users,” Cristopher said. In addition to allowing developers to shrink their app size, bundling also helps “developers improve their compilation times and have a better-organized project.” Overall, App Bundles seemed like a win-win for the Cornershop team, so they decided to make the switch.
What they did
The first thing they did was to modularize the app’s card reader feature. Cornershop offers users the choice to scan their credit cards instead of typing in the data manually, but it’s only necessary when a user needs to enter a new payment method, which isn’t often. Because the card-reader library is really heavy, the team chose to build it as a dynamic feature module so that it gets downloaded only when the user needs it.
Switching was “super easy,” Cristopher said. “We had no problems.” Rolling out the modularized app to their user base was similarly effortless. “There was no difference,” he said. In fact, “we actually improved the process by automating the rollout with fastlane,” an app-deployment tool that integrates seamlessly with Google Play.
Cornershop has reported their app size has been reduced by 27% and they’re just getting started. Encouraged by the success of their first round of modularization, they plan to add more features that were previously too large to consider, such as a barcode scanner.
Cornershop also has some advice for other developers considering app bundles. “I think there are two different processes. One is to encapsulate components and isolate them as modules. The other is to decide which of these modules you want to remove from your app and only offer in some cases.” By thinking about those processes separately and really defining what you want to achieve with them, shrinking your app size can be almost effortless.
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