Android Users Now Get Small "Delta" App Updates: No More Re-Downloading Massive Titles

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News Posted: Thu, Aug 16 2012 8:42 PM
You know, 2GB tiers of data don't seem so limiting when you spend a good chunk of time on a Wi-Fi connection at home or at work, but for those who have to tap into that 2GB to download app updates... well, things can get tight, and fast. For years, both Android and iOS have forced users to redownload entire apps whenever an update hits. Considering just how frequently those roll out, there has been a significant amount of data waste on that alone. But no more. At least for one of those platforms.

At Google I/O this year, the company announced that "delta updates" were coming. Effectively, this would allow updates to simply feed a user the new data needed for the update, instead of forcing them to download the entire app package again. Instead of sucking down a 15MB app once more, perhaps a 1-2MB app update would suffice. This is how things have worked with the "patch" system on desktop PCs for decades, but it's just now coming around to mobile.

Starting today, Android users have noticed delta updates being active. Downloads are shorten, installs are happening faster, and less data is being wasted. This is a huge boon for avid gamers, where single game apps could routinely run 500MB+ in size. Rumor has it that iOS 6 will introduce a similar delta update system, but it looks like Google beat Apple to the punch on this one.
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Thats a nice option coz not all have access to wifi. In my opinion they should make it that updates wont affect the data cap.

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Why? It is not the providers fault an app you downloaded wants to update. They should not be carrying the cost. My 6GB on Bell keeps me well fed. This will be really awesome for some of my games that are currently redownloading a 150mb every time. BTW, where does that 500mb number come from? Never seen anything that size in either app store.

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