FALCON: Fast App Launching with Context


April 13, 2012


David Chu


FALCON: Fast App Launching with Context

Part Of ConDOS: rethinking Context Data for the OS

We have identified ways in which context can benefit key OS services such as memory management, scheduling, I/O and security. As a first step, we have built a prototype of Falcon: Fast App Launching with Context. As mobile apps become more deeply integrated into our everyday lives, mobile app interactions ought to be rapid and responsive. Unfortunately, even the basic primitive of launching a mobile app. is sorrowfully sluggish: 20 seconds of delay is not uncommon even for very popular apps. We have designed and built Falcon to remedy slow app launch. Falcon uses context such as user location and temporal access patterns to predict app launches before they occur. Falcon then provides apps systems support for effective app-specific pre-launching, which can dramatically reduce perceived delay. We use novel features derived through extensive data analysis, and a novel cost-benefit learning algorithm that has strong predictive performance and low runtime overhead. Analysis shows that the user can save up to 35 seconds on a single app launch, resulting in significantly improved user experience. Falcon is implemented as an OS modification to Windows Phone.