The much awaited event of this year- the Google I/O 2014 is over now, in which the Google officials announced some major aspects. Though the expectations were far beyond, lets take a glimpse on what major announcements were done at the Google I/O 2014 event:
This is the major upgrade version of Android OS after the 4.4 KitKat, but this time this was just the developer version released. While the final user version may take some more months to arrive, Google’s senior vice-president Sundar Pichai said that the SDK of this version is available to download. The next version, still unnamed and the version too not specified, is just known as Android L till now. The name was sure to be kept with the letter ‘L’, which is confirmed now, while the version can be 5.0 or even 4.5, we’ll know when the user version will released by Google. This features the further optimization of Android, and is all set to rival with the iOS 8 of Apple. The major new features of the Android L will include the notifications in the lock screen, tablet/smartphone automatically unlock whenever it is near the supported Bluetooth device, the look and design more premium than the previous versions and consistent UI between the Android, Chrome OS and Android wearables.
In the world, more than four-fifth of the people don’t have access to the smartphones- and there are several reasons for that, the price point being the major cause. This concept, developed by Android, plans to provide the smartphone access to all the people living in the world. Especially targeted for emerging markets of Asia, South America and Africa (they are the main places where most of the people cannot afford the smartphones), the Android One project plans to develop the series of smartphone, which will have the top features contained in an smartphone, like the 4.5″ Display, dual sim support, SD card slot, FM radio, and will be available to the users at the price point of less than $100. The platform will be stock android, like that of the Nexus and Google Play Edition smartphones, and the updates will be provided automatically. A photo of Micromax (one of the largest smartphone vendors in India) mobile under the Android One project was shown, but no further specifications were mentioned. The plan is said to start from India, being Micromax the first handset maker of the series- which are eventually joined by Karbonn and Spice. The smartphones under the Android One project are expected to be released worldwide soon.
Android Wear, Chromebook, Auto and TV
After Sundar Pichai mentioned about the Android L and Android One, there was the turn for the Wear, Auto and TV respectively. In the concept of a powerful computer which could be within us all day long, the Android Watch was invented. It is said to assist us in every aspects of daily works, from getting up early, to making our breakfast and checking the mail when we return home. Both circular and square shaped wearables were said to come forward, in different fashionable styles. Parallel, the chromebook which is trying to establish itself in the computer market, is also given some added features. The chromebook will now sync with all of your Android devices, alerting you every time whenever it is needed. For the point of Android auto, it means that Google Maps can finally be in your in-car infotainment systems. Android Auto casts Google’s smartphone experience to your car’s screen and supports steering wheel buttons, console dials and touchscreen. All of the apps are still running on the phone. This is the rival for the Apple’s Carplay, and will be a wonderful experience for all of the Android users. The new TV platform, with much more added features like the voice search and many others, is coming this fall and has television manufacturers including Sony, Sharp and Philips are already on board. The SDKs for the Android Wear and TV were also announced to be available for the developers to download.
Google did not announce a new version update of the Chromecast as expected, but instead the updates to the Chromecast including the ability to cast your entire Android device directly onto your television screen. To prove that anything on your smartphone or tablet can be put up on the big screen, Chromecast was used to mirror the Android camera app, something that typically you wouldn’t want to mirror. The new update will overcome the weak point of the past one too- the dearth of supporting apps.
At the end of the event, Sundar Pichai announced that the each of the visitors present at the event will get the LG or Samsung, and later the Motorola Though there were a lot of interesting things in this Google I/O 2014 to watch, it also missed many things that the users were expecting. The much awaited Google Glass was missed too. There was no any sign of Google releasing next version of the Nexus Device: either a tablet or a phone, and still we can hope it to be released when Google releases final user version of the Android L. However, this year’s I/O was focused mainly on Android, its supports and the accessories which will have Android as an operating platform.