How To Check Webview Version In Android? – Before We Get Into The Topic, let’s Learn Some Basic Of This Topic
Android System WebView (ASW), which you might have found in your Android device’s app list, or occasionally as a Google Play Store Update, maybe what you were looking for. Although this critical app is not something you install or use directly it remains an integral part of the Android OS.
You’ll see Android System WebView depending on which version of Android you have installed. No matter what device you have, ASW (or an updated version) will be required. This guide will explain why and how to keep this component current.
What is Android System WebView and How Does It Work?
Although your Android device might have an internet browser installed on it, that doesn’t mean it is the best tool to open web-based apps or sites. Android System WebView is instead used by Android to identify the page within your apps and open it.
This is done primarily for security and speed. Other apps, instead of relying on third-party apps, can use Android WebView to load content. This allows for the integration of calls to the existing system tool for efficiency.
Over time, Google has improved the relationship Android has with ASW. WebView was only updated by major Android device updates before Android 5 Lollipop.
This changed with the release of Android 5. Users can now update their devices directly from the Google Play Store. This enabled quick bug fixes and has been released.
Android 7 saw further changes, with a WebView that supported Google Chrome being made the default on Android devices. Android 10 made this change again, with WebView becoming a separate component and sharing code with Chrome.
How to Check Which Android System Version WebView Version is Installed
Every WebView release introduces new features, but you should be able to check which version you have installed via your Android device settings.
You will need to go to the settings menu on your Android device for this to happen. This will depend on the version of Android you use and also your device. These steps were written using a Samsung Galaxy S20 smartphone. However, the steps should be identical for Android devices.
- Open the Settings app from your phone’s app launcher. Tap the Apps option.
- An inventory of installed and pre-installed apps should be displayed. You can search for Android System Webview using the search bar. Once you have found it, tap on the entry to open it.
- Scroll down to the App Info screen. The Android System Webview version number will be displayed at the bottom. For instance, Version 83.0.4103.106. These release IDs are identical to those for Google Chrome on Android and reflect their shared codebase.
To determine if your Android WebView version is the most recent, you will need to search it. You can update it if it isn’t.
Updating Android System WebView
ASW is easy to keep up-to-date on newer Android devices. Let’s say you have an older Android device (Android 4.4.4 KitKat or older). WebView is an integrated component of the system that cannot be updated without a major device update.
You can update ASW via the Google Play Store for all future releases.
- Open the Play Store app, and search for Android System WebView. Click the Update button if the app is up to date.
After WebView has been updated, Android will use the WebView remake for any other apps that require it to access the web page.
Installing Different Android System Release Tracks
A single ASW release leaves everyone in one lane. This is a minimum for essential updates. Android 10 and higher devices have more options.
The Android release includes WebView, which shares much of the same code as the Google Chrome app. This shared benefit has many benefits, including a smaller footprint as well as a consistent experience.
Instead of offering this option as a single choice, Google offers four release tracks for WebView. You can choose to install any one of them.
- WebView StableUpdated every few weeks following a thorough test schedule to ensure stability across all devices. This is the most common discharge on all Android devices.
- WebView BetaBeta release sharing the majority of the code and features that WebView stable has. Due to reduced testing, this release could contain additional bugs.
- WebView DevThis is often a development release and may be subject to major changes. You will likely encounter bugs and other issues in this release, but you can also try new features or fixes before others.
- WebView CanaryAbsolutely the most recent, cutting-edge release available with no testings. This release is usually a daily one with the latest code from the previous day. Be careful!
After you have installed one of these WebView releases you can switch to it in your Android developer menu. This information is often hidden so make sure to access your Android settings. Tap on About Phone> Software Information and then double-tap the Build Number information multiple times.
This will enable developer mode on your phone. After you have enabled developer mode, go back to Android settings and tap WebView Implementation. You will see a list of WebView releases available. Tap the option you wish to modify to access it.
You can instead install the Google Chrome release track (Stable Beta, Dev, and Canary) for Android 7 through 9. WebView is integrated into the Google Chrome app for these releases.
How to Disable or Delete Android System WebView
You can’t disable or delete Android System Webview. Or you should not. This component is essential to opening web pages in Android apps.
It’s best to leave WebView enabled, and then keep it updated using the Google Play Store. Switching to a newer version of WebView is an option if you are having problems loading web pages on your Android device.
WebView beta releases could fix a bug in a stable version. These fixes will be available in the WebView stable release within a short time. It’s best to attend to all circumstances.
Keep Android Up-to-Date
Android devices are not well-known for being able to keep their software up-to-date. Google’s ASW component can be kept separate from the rest of the system so that Google can quickly fix any bugs using its Google Play Store. This can be installed on all Android devices, as well as emulated Android devices on your computer.
This is part of standard security measures that developers use to protect their devices from the most serious threats. You might consider installing an Android antivirus application if you are concerned about security. However, this may not be necessary for all users.