How to test application version upgrade from apk to version from android app bundle?

We are going to start using AAB instead of apk for delivery. I configured Play app signing to use existing signing key. To simplify task I didn't use additional upload key. I would want to test upgrade from the latest version from Play Store (where apk was used) to the newest version where we used AAB first time.

I tried:

  1. Installed version from Play Store
  2. Created AAB and signed with usual signing key.
  3. Uploaded the aab file to Closed Testing track in Google Play console.
  4. I downloaded the aab file as a tester.

As a result when I tried to install the app version from aab on top of version from play store I see only "Uninstall" button and text:

"A public version or this app is already installed on this device. Uninstall it and try again."

Also I can see "Upgrade" button if I try to install version from the latest AAB on top of old AAB version from firebase app distribution. There google automatically uses test certificate for signing.

Previously when I used apk, I saw "Upgrade" button when tried to apply test release on top of version from play store.

What was wrong and how can I test upgrade?


  • We could do that only in beta testing. Let's assume versionCode = 101 - is google play store version, versionCode = 102 - is app version from app bundle.

    We used closed testing track to upload app bundle and use it for beta testing (not sure about details of this step, was done by product manager)

    1. install app store version 101
    2. log in
    3. join beta (at bottom of play store page), could take about 15 minutes to process
    4. install beta version 102 from app store page
    5. open app

    We did this, and after step 5, the app opened immediately with the splash screen and then the main app. Didn't see any problems, didn't ask us to reinstall. In app info we saw correct new version name.