Google Play has launched a closed beta for Android Instant functionality for games developers to offer bite-sized downloads on the marketplace.
Android Instant was introduced for apps last year but has now been extended to the games marketplace.
The idea is that with tiny downloads offering just small snippets of gameplay, players can play games almost straight away while also keeping data roaming costs low. The Instant version will sit alongside the full release of the game, acting like a demo.
Android Instant is currently in closed beta but Google plans to open it up more broadly later this year. Current games already available to play instantly include Supercell’s Clash Royale, Zynga’s Words With Friends 2, King’s Bubble Witch 3 Saga and MZ's Final Fantasy XV: A New Empire.
Google Play users can try our the ‘instant’ versions of the titles by visiting the Instant Gameplay collection or heading to the store pages of compatible games.
Google is also working with development tool providers including Unity and Cocos-2D-x to add IDE support.
On top of this Google has revealed new tools to help developers create and manage their games, including a new internal testing track that allows devs to quickly test and iterate on new games and features. This is in addition to the alpha and beta testing tracks and gets your game in the hands of up to 100 testers “within seconds”.
The tech giant has also introduced ‘Demo Loops’ that lets developers predefine a likely series of actions by the player in-game, and have this loop run on live devices in the Test Lab.