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Google has today announced a new feature of their short URLs which will work with the previously announced app deep linking. The new feature will allow developers to share a link and have the URL let users open it in either the browser, or if they have the app installed at the exact location intended in the app.

The feature is cross platform, so will work on Android and iOS, offering developers a way to direct customers into a curated experience in the app. For example, this link (provided by Google) – – will re-direct users who have Google Maps installed on their Android or iOS device to the location within Google Maps – while desktop users will get directed to the website.

The feature also allows developers to utilise the URL shortener API in the share menu, allowing users to share links that provide deep linking back to your app if it’s installed – a win for everyone.

The deep linking does require developers to allow their app to be indexed by Google, a fairly easy process and you can find support from Google here.

The functionality is good to go right now, so check it out and see which apps adopt the new feature.

Source: Google Webmaster blog.