Google Play Instant lets users sneak a peek

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Google has expended its Instant App technology to enable Android users to take some games for a spin before download or purchase. Not only did that let you get things done faster, but also served as some smart advertising for devs; if a user liked what they saw with Instant Apps, they might consider downloading and installing the full thing. Some of the initial games include Clash Royale, Words with Friends 2 and Final Fantasy XV.

"As games have gotten bigger, the time to install has increased, and gamers drop off", Jonathan Karmel, a Google Play Instant product manager, told PCMag. Google also said it will show users news and YouTube videos related to their favorite games to "boost your skills and become a game master". In my experience testing this feature, this still allows the games to load quickly enough, though it doesn't feel quite as instant as most of the regular instant apps do. Jonathan Karmel, Senior Product Manager at Google Play said, explaining some very early data from the live experiments which the company had been quietly running since December a year ago. But it's also a competitive field where one hit can make or break a company. For the most part, though, building an Instant Play game means bringing the file size to under 10 MB and adding a few lines to the app's manifest.

What we really want to know though, is whether developers of premium titles will release bitesize versions of games for you to test.


According to the company, Google Play Instant is in a closed beta that will open to a broader audience later this year. Not every game will support "Instant".

As we noted, there are only a handful of instant games available at launch - but both the new Play Games app and a selection of instant games are available now for Android users to try. For starters, they're only in the Play Store, but Google says the format can be used all over the web, so you might see links to play games in a lot more places soon.

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