Google I/O, the company’s annual developer’s conference begins May 17 till May 19 at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California. While I/O is squarely aimed at the developers community, Google usually makes big announcements about its major products and services.
Of course, rumours and leaks have been plenty ahead of this year’s conference as well. Here’s a look at some of the announcements we’re expecting to see when Google kicks off the conference. The highlight of the event will be Wednesday’s keynote, set for 10 am (local time)/10:30 p.m. IST.
We can definitely expect some announcements about Android O, the next-generation of Google’s mobile operating system for smartphones and tablets. Though Google already released the first developer preview of Android O, I/O is the platform where we will learn more about the OS.
As we’ve seen in the preview, major improvements to battery and notifications are likely to be the key focus. Plus, Google could spend some quality time about Android O’s Bluetooth audio capabilities. We’ll also probably find out when Android O gets released for consumers, which is usually around the October-November time frame.
Sundar Pichai has been quite vocal about Artificial intelligence (AI), integrating everything from search results to chat apps to Google Assistant and the Home speaker. At this year’s developers conference, Google will probably announce that Assistant is coming to the iPhone and it could also make its way to third-party appliances like GE home appliances, according to Bloomberg. The intention is to make an entire platform based on AI and voice-control. It’s not clear if we’re going to hear about the second-generation Home speaker.
Android Wear has been something Google hasn’t been able to communicate well with its consumers. Although Android Wear has been well adopted by electronic makers and Swiss watchmakers, the platform still hasn’t matured yet. Earlier this year, Google launched a revamped version of the OS – Android Wear 2.0 – following an official announcement at Google I/O 2016. The OS featured a new interface, watch face Complications, the Google Assistant, and a Wear Google Play store. Given the OS is only beginning to roll out, it’s unlikely Google will release a new software version of Android Wear. Google will largely discuss how developers can take advantage of the OS’ features like Google Assistant and standalone apps.
Of late, there hasn’t been much news about Google’s VR platform, Daydream. Since its debut at last year’s I/O, the platform has been exclusive to the Google Pixel and a few other handful of devices. On May 18, the second day of I/O, Google has planned an augmented reality and virtual reality keynote, where we can expect to hear a lot of updates to the Daydream platform.
After Android and Chrome, Google is silently working on the third, operating system, currently codenamed Fuchsia. It’s possible that Google could use the opportunity to reveal Fuchsia, which is touted to have a card-based ‘Armadillo’ UI. The OS is based on Google’s ‘Magenta’ kernel instead of Linux like Android.
Chrome OS Google’s Chrome OS has been a massive success in the education space. Sure, the OS has surpassed Macs in terms of popularity, but it still hasn’t been able to run Android apps as smoothly as it should be in the first place. This year’s conference will likely convince developers how they can modify their apps for a laptop-sized screen. Also, there have been strange rumours about Google merging Android and Chrome into one operating system, dubbed as “Andromeda.” One of the key features of the OS will be to run Android apps to work on Chrome.
Disclaimer: The reporter is attending Google’s I/O conference at the invite of Google India
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