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Android 12 will let you play games before they've finished downloading

You could start playing within a matter of seconds.

Published onJuly 12, 2021

Games icon of the Google Play store Call of duty mobile
  • Android 12 will include a “play as you download” feature that lets you start games before all their content is available.
  • This mirrors a feature you frequently see in console and PC games.
  • Games could launch “at least” twice as quickly as before.

Are you tired of waiting ages for an Android game to download gigabytes of content before you can start playing? You’ll get a solution soon. Google has revealed that Android 12 will include a “play as you download” feature that, as the name implies, lets you start playing before the entire game is sitting on your phone.

The download feature could get you into a game within “seconds,” Google said. In early testing, the company saw games ready to launch “at least” twice as quickly.

Read more: The best Android games available now

The Android 12 download technology comes alongside existing efforts to bolster the game experience, such as smarter texture compression, a new anti-cheating framework (Play Integrity) and improved pre-registration for upcoming titles.

This isn’t a novel concept if you’re a veteran gamer. Many console and PC gaming platforms let you fire up a game after a partial download — it’s just relatively rare to see this built into mobile operating systems. It could be more useful on mobile, too. You could discover a hot new game during your commute and start playing well before you get to school or work.

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