The Google I/O 2016 event held yesterday had some futuristic highlights for the tech industry. The newly announced apps will shape the industry in the coming days and years ahead.
Instant Apps are Coming
Apps taking up unnecessary space on your Android tablet or phone? No problem.
Google’s New Instant apps are going to solve this problem for you, resulting in apps that can be launched instantly without being installed on your mobile device. And the best part? The Instant Apps are expected to be compatible from Android Jelly Bean version to the latest one.
These app works by partially fetching code from online to function. It is intelligent and works by only fetching code that you want to use the app for (for instance, video streaming).
Android Wear and Android Auto Get Updates
Google has overhauled Android Wear with Android Wear 2.0. It isn’t much different from the first version but it has certain notable changes. Users can now show data from any app to their watch display.
The popular traffic-tracking app Waze is now built directly into Android Auto. This will allow drivers to see speed trap warnings and accident alerts in real time. The new Auto can also connect to cars over Wi-Fi, which is an upgrade on the previous wired USB connection. The slow-yet-steady update will slowly enable Google to control every function in your car in the near future.
Google Has A New VR platform: Daydream
Google has launched its virtual reality platform Daydream. It is built on Android N which means it will not compete with PC powered HTC Vine or Oculus Rift but looks more powerful in performance than the cardboard.
Daydream is Android with support for VR. The current features of Daydream include a home screen with apps (which looks a lot like the Gear VR’s home screen) including the VR versions Google has already created of its own apps like YouTube, Street View, the Google Play Store, Play Movies, and Google Photos. Many other companies including The New York Times, HBO, Ubisoft, and Electronic Arts are already developing for Daydream as well.
At the moment, the big limitation for Daydream is that it will work only on new phones that have special sensors and screens. According to Google, the Daydream-ready phones will be available from this fall. Samsung, LG, Huawei are some of the notable companies expected to launch these phones.
Due to some rumors it was expected that Google will announce its own mid-tier headset but this turned out to be partially true only. Google showcased a reference design for smart phone powered VR headset. This makes it look like a smaller and cordless Oculus Rift.
Google is providing companies with software that shows them the structure & guidelines for development of hardware. Google’s approach makes us guess that we might not get to see an actual headset any time soon & we will keep noticing new blue prints for it.
Google’s New Assistants
Google’s assistant manager for Allo is a one of its kind of chatbot. You can start a chat with it and ask questions. Sundar Pichai demonstrated the assistant’s ability to parse context by asking it what movies were playing tonight, specifying that he wanted to bring the kids, and then buying tickets. Just like asking a human being to do these things.
The company also debuted the new Google Assistant, the spiritual successor to Google Now. The powerful voice assistant now has conversational skills, something that can help it become more humanized and useful than ever before.
Google also announced a new home assistant called Google Home. It consists of a small speaker with always-listening microphones that integrates into a broad range of services. Users can chat and command it to perform different tasks. Google home is a step forward to develop smart homes.
Android Gets Better
In March we got the first look of Android N. Now Google showcased a Beta version with more preview of the operating system. N could also be a better platform for gaming courtesy of a battery of optimizations and a new API called Vulkan which lets developers directly control a phone’s GPU for sharper 3D graphics.
Google I/O 2016 represented some great and some not so great announcements. Did we miss anything? What was your favorite announcement from the event? Let us know in the comments below.