With Google’s annual developer conference, Google I/O, starting Thursday morning it’s little wonder that we already know what’s in store. As opposed to the ever mysterious and aloof Apple, that only gives events a couple times a year, Google is more of a “shout about it” company, that is constantly announcing updates and products.
Last year’s event debuted Android TV, Android Auto and Android Lollipop (known then only a “L”), and it also launched Android Wear.
Previous events included a skydiving stunt to hype Google Glass. This year though, it’s focused on the developers.
1. Android M
Well, we know it exists, and it’s been confirmed by Google. Mostly though, just like “L” stood for Lollipop, I want to know what “M” stands for. Marshmellow? Maple Syrup? Probably though, we will have to wait for the official release. Apparently Android M will have improved battery life thanks to improvements in location and RAM. Also expecting fingerprint sensors, so make way.
2. Android Pay
If fingerprint sensors didn’t smell like Apple, this sure will. Android Pay has to be the successor to Google Wallet, because let’s face it: Google Wallet was a flop. Probably it will be promoted by allowing a mobile-payment option for apps, to secure more developers to their side.
3. Google+ Calls It Quits
Yeah, and it’s about time. The past year has been and a slow, agonizing death. Most likely, Google I/O will separate Photos and Streams (the only two good services to come out of Google+). Most likely it will become an app (perfect for this conference, then).
The new Android Wear update is still fresh, which means plenty of wristwear will follow shortly. We’ve even heard rumors that Android Wear will support iOS, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.
The Cardboard from last year, which literally was a piece of cardboard that transformed into VR glasses on the cheap, will probably have a newer, shiny (not cardboard?) model.
6. Android of Things
You know The Internet of Things because every major tech company has been buzzing about it - except for Google. And yet we know that Google acquired Nest last year, so the new IoT platform, some people are calling Brillo, could be debuted this week.
Because this has been updated since 2013.
Oh yes, Project Ara’s modular phones will be here. But don’t expect any Nexus, folks.
9. 3D Imaging
Project Tango, which gives 3D graphics on your computer, is surely close to being finished by now.