Google announced today that the upcoming release of Bundletool 1.10 that they’re going to allow apps to define themselves as archivable.
According to the announcement on the developers blog this will allow users to reclaim about ~60% of the space used for app storage by temporarily removing parts of the app, and restoring as needed later on.
Later releases will allow for packing up user data and squishing it, but that’s not now.
It seems this functionality could be modified to free up significantly more of the space if they added “off device archive” which essentially would be deleting the APK and compiled execution data, leaving the user data and a flag that tells where to get the program back.
The idea behind archiving in this upcoming release is that a user can free up space without deleting user data. One of the next releases will allow the user data to be compressed. This allows that game you’re not really certain you want to keep on your phone because it’s taking 3gb and does not control your life at all, to survive to be reinstalled another day when you’re not taking 400 photos in high res at your sister’s wedding.[Android Developers Blog]