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Andrea Maglie

Software Engineer, guitar player. Founder of GDG (Google Developer Group) Venice.

Migrate to Android Studio 2.3

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New features

Android Studio 2.3 has finally been released in the Stable Channel. There are many improvements compared to version 2.2, including:

  • Instant run: now there are two different icons, one for restart the app and another one for apply changes without restart. Screen Shot 2017-03-02 at 9.12.10 AM.png
  • Build cache: it’s used to have faster clean builds by caching exploded AARs and pre-dexed external libraries.
  • App Links Assistant (Tools → App Link Assistant): it allows you to create new intent filters for your URLs, declare your app’s website association through a Digital Asset Links file, and test your Android App Links support.
  • Support to WebP lossless image format: the WebP format is . Android Studio 2.3 has a new wizard that converts any non-launcher PNG file to WebP (up to 25% smaller than a PNG) and WebP back to PNG.
  • Constraint Layout with Chains and Ratios: this new version of Android Studio includes the stable release of ConstraintLayout. You can now chain two or more Android views bi-directionally together to form a group on one dimension (helpful when you want to place two views close together but want to spread them across empty space).

Problems and issues

Migration from Android Studio 2.2 to Android Studio 2.3 may not be completely painless.

This is a list of things that you may need to check to have everything working correctly.

  • In your root build.gradle file the gradle version should be updated to 2.3.0:

    classpath ‘’

  • The gradle distribution should be updated to version 3.3, so check for the following line in file gradle/wrapper/


  • If you are using Kotlin, update both the Android Studio plugin and the dependency in your build.gradle to version 1.1.0

  • If you use annotation processors (like ButterKnife for example):

    • remove the following line:

      apply plugin: ‘android-apt’

    • change all occurrences of “apt” to “annotationProcessor”:

      compile ‘com.jakewharton:butterknife:8.4.0’

      annotationProcessor ‘com.jakewharton:butterknife-compiler:8.4.0’

You can find a complete list of improvements in the original blog post:

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