What is Android System WebView?

Android phone screen displaying the Play Store’s Android System WebView app.
You may be familiar with an app called Android System WebView if you own an Android handset. This system app gets updates frequently from the Google Play store. What does it do, though, and should you get rid of it?

an essential element of the system
Android Operating System Android apps use WebView, a crucial system component, to show external online content rather than opening it in a standard web browser like Chrome. All Android devices already have it loaded.

To open shared URLs within the program, it is frequently used in applications like Twitter and Facebook. However, numerous other Android programs also make use of it to show web material that isn’t part of the application.

The Google Chrome web browser, which is powered by the same open source project that underpins the Webview app, does not have all the functionality found in Chrome’s complete release. As a result, it cannot take the place of a standard browser.

What does Android System WebView do?

Twitter’s android system webview
Twitter for Android leverages the Android system WebView.
Google provides various methods for applications to expose extra information, such as the possibility of turning on a WebView, custom tabs, and a conventional web browser. However, whenever it is necessary to display external material, app developers leverage WebView capability to keep users inside their apps and deliver a smooth experience.

Every time you tap on a URL in an app, a container opens inside it and renders the complete webpage thanks to WebView. Additionally, app developers can alter this container to match the program’s general user interface. This gives you a consistent user experience and prevents the transmission of external web material to a different browser software for opening.

Why are changes made to the Android system webview?

Webview system update for Android
The list of frequently updated apps includes the Android system WebView. This is so that Google can keep Webview up to date with all the most recent improvements and bug fixes made to the Chromium project. All apps that use Webview must have these changes in order to function properly.

The reason it appears to have been recently added to your apps is that WebView used to be updated as part of a significant Android update. However, the company has made this upgradeable as such a distinct Android System WebView app accessible through the Google Play store starting with the Android 5.0 Lollipop update. By doing this, it may receive updates as needed rather than relying on infrequent system upgrades.

The fact that you don’t have to manually update the Android system webview app is crucial. Instead, it gets all updates automatically.

Can Android System WebView be removed?

Disable webview on Android system
Because it is a system program, the Android system webview app cannot be removed from an Android device. Updates can be disabled or removed, but neither action will do any of this for a good reason. This is so that many apps and games can display content from other websites and other sources. If you disable it, you run the risk of compromising some of their operation at best and destabilizing them completely at worst.

It’s interesting to note that Google used the complete version of Chrome for WebView capabilities on Android 7, Android 8, and Android 9 versions. Despite being pre-installed on every Android device, the system WebView app was not often utilized or updated. Therefore, for these versions, disabling the Android system WebView has no effect on how well any app performs, but you also won’t gain anything. Therefore, it is recommended to ignore the app.

Are WebView Beta, Dev, or Canary available?

Version of the Android system webview
Pre-release versions of the Android system WebView, such as Beta, Dev, and Canary, are distributed through the Google Play store like most other applications. However, if their apps make use of WebView capability, these versions are meant for app developers to test impending updates to WebView.

Regular users shouldn’t utilize them, and installing a pre-release version won’t help either. As a result of the beta, dev, and canary versions’ incomplete testing and potential instability, you could have to cope with bugs instead.

A crucial component of the Android ecosystem

The Android System WebView app, in its entirety, is a crucial component of the fundamental Android experience. This app is not your normal one, though. Therefore, you cannot manually access this app and it is not shown on the launcher. But only when an app requires it. It’s a good idea to be aware of this to prevent problems from occurring if you disable it or remove updates.

However, if you’re seeking for apps that can be uninstalled, take into account bulk app deletion and other strategies to free up space on an Android device.

Read Also: What is Data Roaming? All About Data Roaming

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