PWA converted to APK shows address bar after x amount of time

I have set up our website to work as a PWA, i converted it using a PWA2APK converter, and installed it on my phone.

The manifest.json setting for display is set to standalone, and everything is working as expected, except once thing:

After an unclear amount of time, for a reason I have yet to figure out, it seems the display setting gets changed to minimal-UI.

Meaning, after leaving the app open in the background for a while - usually I see this when I open the app after it has been in the background overnight, the app refreshes, and then a top navigation bar is shown (such as you would see if you would set the display setting to minimual-UI).

I have not figured out how to even reproduce this issue, I tried disconnecting the internet, leaving it open and checking it again, but nothing I do seems to replicate the issue, it only happens when I am not trying to make it happen.

Any thoughts?

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Still a mystery this one.

I connected the phone to the browser and opened the dev tool so that I will be able to see the console, my theory (hope) was that maybe what ever is causing this issue will show a clue in the console window, but while it was connected the issue did not occur.

Any thoughts or directions would help a lot!

If anyone is interested in this or faces a similar issue in the future, I have a few updates:

  1. This is happening on other PWA apps as well, not just mine. I tested on another major social media app (I don’t remember which it was, I tested it it a while ago) and the same issue occurred there.
  2. The issue happens when you clear your browser history.

So, a PWA installed on your phone (android in my case) will use your devices default browser as a standalone app, and it will just load your website.
If you browse through the PWA app, and then go to your default browser and look at the history, you will see that the pages you visited in your PWA app will be in the browsers history.

The issue happens when you clear your browsers history.
This happens even if you used your PWA app a few hours ago or yesterday even, and you clear your browser history for just the past hour. This will cause the nav bar to show at the top (which is the main issue), even though you were not in the app for the past hour.

I’m still not sure why its happening or if it can be fixed, but at least I know its not a problem with my app alone, and I know that it shouldn’t be happening very often as I don’t think most people clear their history that often.

Hope this can be helpful to someone, ill update if I find anything else out.


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