If you're a Google Gamer – as in, an Android gamer – then there's a bit of good news in store for you. A new leak in advance of this week's big Google I/O conference has revealed a host of gaming-friendly features set to arrive to the Android platform in the form of a new "Google Play Games" service.
The website Android Police managed to get its hands on a new version of Google Play Service, the mechanism by which the new changes will arrive on Android phones of all kinds. But the new, controller-shaped icons that get dropped on a user's home screen (representing gaming–related activities) are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the features Google's throwing into the mix.
For starters, gamers can expect to find new Google+ integration for their games, which will allow them to send and receive notifications about what they're up to via Google's primary social network. A little additional digging by Android Police also reveals that Google is also finally opening the door for synchronised game saves – an option that should appear within your standard Google account settings, where one would otherwise toggle Android's synchronisation with Gmail, Google Calendar, and other services.
Those looking to tie their gaming exploits to a numerical representation of their personal awesomeness will surely enjoy Google's new integration of achievements into the mix – including popups that should automatically notify gamers when they've done something especially noteworthy within one of their titles. Leaderboards are also set to arrive within the Google Play Games update, which includes a few ranked icons that will presumably be used to tell gamers just how they did in a particular game (or match) compared to their other friends.
As for gaming with others, Google Play Games is also set to handle invites and matchmarking for those who want to get a little multiplayer action in on Android. There's some kind of "auto-pick" functionality that gamers would presumably be able to use to match themselves up against others – of similar skill levels, we hope. Matchmaking rooms with chat functionality are also likely to appear, based on Android Police's thorough scouring of the new Google Play Service .apk file.
And, of course, there's even more buried within the data that Android Police has yet to officially reveal. Presumably, the site will finish its additional look at all that's buried within the Google Play Services update before Google I/O where, starting Wednesday, Google might invariably spill the beans on its new gaming features itself.