Google Play Store might bring ‘parallel downloads’ for multiple apps

What you need to know

  • Google’s latest Play Store version shows signs of a new “parallel download” feature, which would let users download and install multiple apps simultaneously.
  • The feature appears to have limitations, such as its lack of support for app updates and the fact that users can only download two apps at once.
  • This “parallel” feature was discovered several years ago in an apparent Google test but never arrived on Android.

The latest deep dive appears to show Google’s ongoing development of a new simultaneous download feature for multiple apps.

According to AssembleDebug (TheSpAndroid), a peek into the Play Store’s latest 40.0.13 version showed evidence of a new “parallel download” function (via Android Authority). Enabling the appropriate flags produced the feature’s ability to download more than one app at a time instead of forcing a user to wait.

Unfortunately, testing showed that this convenient feature has some limitations. Firstly, the post states that simultaneously downloading and installing doesn’t work with app updates. Users can tap “update all,” but the Play Store will only download and install one at a time, which is similar to how it works currently. 

It was also observed that Google implemented a cap on the number of simultaneous downloads a user can make. The company has it set to only two apps at a time. However, AssembleDebug pushed this to five in the code.

The feature will likely remain in testing for a while longer until Google works out any known issues.

(Image credit: TheSpAndroid)

What’s interesting is that this feature was seemingly in testing years ago, as a user on Reddit brought attention to it. The original poster noticed the Play Store downloading three apps at once. Curiously, it appears as though they were all apps updates, which the current development process no longer supports. The user on Reddit also mentioned a dip in their internet quality, considering their phone’s sheer intake of downloading three apps at once.

Perhaps this is a reason why Google has decided to cap the simultaneous download to two — at least for the moment.

Another discovery involving the Play Store shows Google’s plans to roll out “Featured Stories” to an app’s details section. These stories would appear as a colorful card when an app’s information is expanded. The discovery showed users would find recommended apps of a similar category to the app they’re in.

Additionally, a look at version 39.8 of the Play Store showed signs of some dialogue box UI changes.

Via: Androidcentral

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