For my case, I have explicitly turn off Instance Run, and also the device has not installed version of the App. Hence the APK generate is definitely not reduce due to optimized for InstanceApp. Please try it from your side, and you’ll see what I meant.
Also, when I stated compiled and could be submit to store, is because my
build.gradle has been properly setup to compile and signed my APK. using
Having this in place, the manually compiled release APK is signed and could be submitted to store or install on the device.