Google’s I/O 2011(developer conference) commenced today.
So Google came with a bagful of goods:
- Android Is Converging
Android on a tablet? Android on a phone? In a little while it won’t matter at all —they’ll all be working the same Android operating system known as Ice Cream Sandwich. “Our goal with Ice Cream Sandwich is to deliver one operating system that works everywhere, regardless of device,” says Google. That’s actually an intelligent move by Google, as Android has lately been having problem with “fragmentation”.
TL;DR: Same version of the Android operating system will work on phones/tablets.(No specific Android tablet OS;phone OS)
- Android Movies
Soon an Android user would be able to rent a movie from the Android Market and stream it to any Android device(phone or tablet). Rentals will start from $1.99 upwards and you’ll be able to view the movie for 30 days (or 24 hours once you hit the play button). All the Motorola Xoom tablets have started Android Movies today itself, so if you have Xoom get on it. Phones running Android 2.2 and up will get access to movies in a few weeks. You can also rent movies directly from the Android Market on the web starting today.
TL;DR: Rent movies on one of your Android device(phone/tablet) it’ll work on all of them
- Google Music Beta
Google’s long-rumored online music service is finally almost here. It’s being rolled out in a private beta for U.S. residents. You can upload up to 20,000 songs to the service and then play them back from any connected Android device.
It’ll automatically download frequently-played tracks to your phone or tablet, too. There’s also a feature called Instant Mix that creates intelligent playlists much like Apple’s “Genius” feature found within iTunes.
You can install a program called Music Manager on your Windows or Mac, which will automatically keep any tracks added to iTunes or Windows Media Player synchronized with Google Music, so it should be a fairly hands-off process. Google Music will be free while in beta—no word on pricing.
TL;DR: Just watch the video lazy ass:
- Devices to Be Upgraded to New Versions of Android Faster
Part of the problem with the current state of Android is that a new version with new features will get released, but your phone won’t get the new version for months. Google’s now working on making sure that devices in the future will be quickly upgraded to the latest version.
Android is working together with big-name wireless players “to adopt guidelines for how quickly devices are updated after a new platform release, and also for how long they will continue to be updated.”
Officially quoting some Google bigshot:
“The founding partners are Verizon, HTC, Samsung, Sprint, Sony Ericsson, LG, T-Mobile, Vodafone, Motorola and AT&T, and we welcome others to join us. To start, we’re jointly announcing that new devices from participating partners will receive the latest Android platform upgrades for 18 months after the device is first released, as long as the hardware allows.”
That’s good news for Android users. Seeing that most of the Android users are stuck with the same phone for at least two years, these guidelines would ensure that we’d get the latest Android software in a timely manner. People have accused the carriers of dragging their feet on Android updates in order to get people to buy new phones instead, so this would hopefully put a stop to that merciless raping.
TL;DR: In the future it might so happen that your Android devices will automatically upgrade their version to become the most up-to-date version with all the fixes etc.
- Android Open Accessory and Android@Home Initiatives
Finally, some very cool technology was demonstrated that tied Android devices into other items we use every day.
The Android Open Accessory initiative provides a way for anyone to build something that can interface with an Android phone or tablet.
Google demonstrated an exercise bike that could communicate with an Android phone, and you’d have different workout apps on the phone itself that would communicate back and forth with the bike to relay calorie counts, different workout regimens, and stuff like that.Now isn’t that fascinating?
And the Android@Home initiative “allows Android apps to discover, connect and communicate with appliances and devices in your home.” Google has partnered with a manufacturer of LED light bulbs that have the technology built right into them, so we may see those hit the market by the end of the year. You’d be able to control these light bulbs from your phone or tablet.(Also obesity going up by 40%)
Google is also extending Android@Home into a music-based offering called Project Tungsten. You’d have a little web-connected box that’d plug into sets of speakers around your house and you could stream music to different rooms from your phone or tablet—using Google Music, duh.
Google even showed a cool proof-of-concept demo where you’d tap an RFID-enabled CD case against a Project Tungsten box, and all the tracks on that CD would become available in your Google Music library for instant streaming. Google would have to get the music industry on board with this—which could take forever—but I’m guessing the music industry wouldn’t mind trying to sell a few more CDs, so it might actually get on board with this idea
TL;DR: Google/Android will have an entire home system ready for you. So if you buy anything apart from Google/Android it wont fit in. But doesnt matter Google is awesome.