Google I/O 2016 – The Top 5 Announcements You Need to Know
Google I/O 2016 wrapped up this year with a whole lot of announcements from the technology behemoth that are equally exciting for the consumers as they are for developers.
Did we move too quickly? For the uninitiated, Google I/O is Google’s top level product and research conference that happens every year. “This year the focus was on messaging apps (Google’s new apps – Allo and Duo). But most of all on its new artificial intelligence platform that it is plugging everywhere, especially in devices that answer your questions and does stuff by voice – called Google Home”, says Sandeep Srinivasa, an IIT-B alumnus and tech entrepreneur. The product and services announcements this year were many. However, not all of them were ready for a demo at the tech mega conference. So while we wait to see some of these things in action, here’s a summary of what really happened at Google I/O 2016.
What was announced at Google I/O 2016
It is a revamped version of Google Now that can work with and within other apps. The difference is that Google Assistant has been given a more powerful AI (artificial intelligence) to enable it to converse with the user, giving a far more personalized experience for the user.
Home will serve as the central hub for connecting Google Assistant with your connected smart devices. Google Home is capable of supporting streaming and casting, and again has been given a powerful AI. However, not many are happy with the fact that it will learn from your browsing habits and equip itself with suitable responses to your queries as it learns more about you.
Google Allo and Duo
Allo is a new telephone number-based messaging app with Duo as a companion that allows you to preview your caller in a live video feed even before you answer the call. It is being dubbed by experts as the most human video chat ever and is perhaps one of the most eagerly awaited product announced at Google I/O this year.
Android Instant Apps
Android Instant Apps was perhaps the most underrated announcement at the Google I/O this year. Experts believe it will have the most far reaching effect on the future of apps and were quite excited with the demo. It will allow users to access app content without even having to download and install the app. For example, someone sends you a link that can be accessed in an app only, Android will skip downloading the app and only download a relevant module that it needs to open the link.
Google is beginning to show its seriousness for AI and VR (virtual reality) devices. The Daydream VR is a visionary, affordable, mobile virtual reality platform from Google. Many handset manufacturers like Samsung, LG, HTC, Xiaomi and others are already on-board and working on devices according to “reference design specs” released by Google. The first of these devices are expected towards the end of 2016.
This is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg that Google unveiled at I/O 2016. The most promising of these announcements revolved around VR and AI integration into Google platforms that we use every day. Some experts believe that these devices might be testing the limits of propriety in terms of invading the privacy of the consumer. However, it will be exciting to see the promises made by Google to its consumers and developers as they come to life in the near future.