Google I/O is a developer-focused conference held by Google every year since 2008. This year the event was held at the Moscone Center, San Francisco on 25th and 26th June.
Google leverages this platform to announce and launch new products, and this year also Google has made some important announcements. What Google has outlined in this year’s I/O event is that it wants Android to be everywhere. Whether it’s your wearable, car, or TV – Android would follow you everywhere.
Every initiative, every project Google has announced or spoken about in the I/O 2014 involves Android. There’s a pool of opportunities for Android app developers to build great apps for some great devices to come.
Here’s a highlight on the major developments and announcements:
Google announced its Android One initiative which aims at providing high quality and affordable smartphones to people in developing nations. The first Android One device is being developed by Google along with Micromax, an Indian mobile device manufacturer to deploy affordable smartphones (running on stock Android) below the $100 mark.
Android L is the successor to Android Kit-Kat with the objective to enhance the user experience in a way that extends beyond mobile devices, wearables, cars, TV and others. Google is adding more than 5,000 new APIs to Android L along with a new suite of design tools called ‘Material Design’ which focuses on object depth and animation.
After the unsuccessful run of Google TV, Google now announces Android TV. This brings all the Android features to your TV. You will be able to access apps from Play store and play Android games on your TV, along with voice input. “We’re simply giving TV the same level of attention as phones and tablets have traditionally enjoyed. We want you to leverage your existing skills and investment in Android and extend them to TV”, said Dave Burke, the Engineering Director of Google.
Android Wear smartwatches
Google had announced the Android Wear project three months prior to the I/O 2014. The project allows developers to build apps for smatwatches and other wearables. In the event Google announced what Android Wear are coming out this year. LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live will be the first two Android Wears to hit the market, and are now available for pre-orders. Motorola’s Android Wear smartwatch will be the next in line for release. The Android Wear SDK is available for download. If you are an app developer, you can download the SDK and start tweaking your apps for Android Wear.
After the announcement of its Open Automotive Alliance in January 2014, Google announced its next step to get Android into auto – Android Auto. Android auto provides you the scenario where if you connect your Android phone with your car you can access the apps on the dashboard of your car. You can then navigate through your mobile apps using your car controls. To avoid distractions further, Android Auto has been voice enabled.
Android apps for Chromebooks
Google is working on bridging the gap between Android phones and Chromebooks. Users will be able to run Android apps and receive notifications from Android device on Chromebook. Also, if you have your Android smartphone with you, Google would automatically detect the phone on Chromebook and sign you into your apps and services. Google showed a demo where apps were transferred from a Android phone to Chromebook.
All these ongoing and upcoming projects offer great opportunities to app developers. Android developers could leverage Google’s platform to build great apps.