Mobile gaming is one of the booming industries today. With numerous games of different genres to cater to all kinds of users and players, the Android gaming section is only going for a rise in the future. Games in all categories like adventure, arcade, educational, puzzle, simulation, strategy, trivia, music, or card, both free and paid, are prevalent amongst youngsters in today’s time.
Recently, Google has rolled out rumors of developing a new feature for Android that shall allow users to start gaming even before they finish installing the game. Google has made few patch submissions to check to merge support for the new system into the Linux Kernel.
As per the document that Google has submitted, Incremental FS is a virtual Linux New File System that allows the execution of a program even while its binary functions and resource files are in the process of downloading. This technology is almost similar to the ones which operate in PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
In simpler words, Android will allow its users to start playing games even before the game has been downloaded and installed completely. So, let’s say you would like to download a 4GB game on your device. This will take a considerable amount of time to download and launch on your smartphone.
But the new incremental FS can effortlessly launch the game without any discontinuity while the game gets downloaded in the background.
The User Experience
From the recent proceedings, it is visible that Google is trying out new ways and means to enhance the overall user experience. This could also be a beginning to the method of gaming in which gamers will no longer require to download massive games to start playing entirely.
This would also result in serving as a native Instant Apps replacement, which will not need developers to work extra as the implementation will be directly done in-kernel.
In we go deeper into the documentation submitted by Google, we can see that Google suggests Android will be downloading the data packages first. This means an intro file will be downloaded initially while the complete game can be downloaded later. It also recommends loading ‘hot blocks,’ which shall be used as filler content to avoid any kind of discontinuity or friction while gaming.
Incremental New File System feature
Google has also confirmed that new Android devices with the Incremental FS feature will have an incremental data directory, which will contain subdirectories for each of the app installed or launched on the particular device.
For the past year, Google has been testing the Incremental FS feature in Google Pixel 4 XL. However, there has been no significant news about the success of the feature now. We hope to see the feature roll out with Android v12 later in 2021.