Google’s new file system can let you play Android games before they’re completely downloaded1
However, big games sometimes take a while to download and this can be unnerving if you just want to quickly test a new game or you don’t have a lot of time to spare waiting for a game to fully download so that you can play. Google appears to have thought of this as it is developing a new file system, called Incremental File System, which will allow a game to be launched before all the data for it has been downloaded to the device.
We can read on Google’s documentation on LWN.net the definition of the new feature. The Incremental File System is a “special-purpose Linux virtual file system that allows execution of a program while its binary and resource files are still being lazily downloaded over the network, USB etc.”. That simply means that to launch any big Android app you need to have some content downloaded and the data left can continue downloading while the app has already been started.
Unfortunately, it’s also mentioned that sometimes it may be necessary for the app to wait if some important block of data hasn’t been loaded yet, which means that the user can experience a loading pause of some sort. However, the data is to be loaded in hot blocks of important information so that the aforementioned occurrence can be rare and apps can run smoothly.
XDA Developers doesn’t expect this feature to be available with Android 11, and most likely it is to be implemented no sooner than Android 12 in 2021.