The keynote for Google I/O 2014 ended about half an hour ago. I watched all two hours and thirty nine minutes of it, taking notes along the way. For your reading enjoyment, here they are!
- A reference “software experience” for low-end phones in the developing world.
- Hallmarks are: (1) stock Android, (2) updates directly from Google, (3) auto-installed carrier-approved software from Google Play.
- Launch partners for India include Micromax, Karbonn, and Spice.
- The next major release of Android, due this fall.
- A new look: “Material Design” (think overlapping pieces of paper).
- developers can now specify “elevation values”—that is, measurements along the Z axis.
- “Recents” menu redesigned, now includes Chrome tabs as well as apps.
- Search results now include installed apps and the web.
- Android L is 100% ART and supports 64-bit processors.
- Better battery life via “Project Volta”; for users, a battery saver feature.
- Early system images for Nexus 5 and 7 will be available tomorrow.
- Security updates will be pushed through Google Play, not Android updates.
- Universal Data Controls: centralized privacy settings for all installed apps.
- Materials UI optimized for square and circular screens, featuring cards that can be swiped away.
- SDK includes geo-location support, demoed with ride-sharing app Lyft.
- Eat24 demo: order a pizza in twenty seconds from your wrist.
- Allthecooks demo: recipe steps speed away are synchronized between phone and watch
- LG G Watch will be available later today (!).
- Samsung Gear Live will be available later today (!!).
- Moto 360 available later this summer (greeted with audible disappointment from the crowd).
- Enabling the user to “cast” their phone to your car’s in-dash system.
- Apps can be controlled from the dash or by voice.
- Android Auto SDK will enable development of car-friendly apps.
- 40 partners and 20 car brands have already joined the Open Automotive Alliance.
- Input from the user via a supported D Pad with voice.
- Can also be virtual D Pad (Android TV app on tablet, phone or watch).
- Voice-powered search delivers paid content to your big screen.
- Games can be controlled by any Android device, or multiple devices at the same time.
- Google cast is supported for the same functionality as Chromecast.
- Now you (and others) can cast media to your television from cellular networks.
- It’s opt-in, so the owner of the TV always have control.
- New feature: Backdrop – an ambient screen saver/photo viewer for your TV.
- Users can Google: “What’s on my Chromecast?” and get results from Backdrop on their handheld device.
- Phone and tablet users can now cast their device screens to their TV.
- Android L will let you unlock and sign into your Chromebook with your Android phone.
- Call and text notifications will appear on both devices.
- Native Android apps are coming to Chrome OS.
Android for Work
- Data separation and security: personal and work data are quarantined on same device.
- Native Office editing (including saves) in Google Docs.
- Increased security and controls for Google Drive.
INTERLUDE: High-level developer coding-type stuff that I didn’t really understand…
Freebies for Attendees
- Free LG G Watch or Samsung Gear Live.
- A free Moto G 360 when it becomes available (!!!).
And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to repeatedly press F5 on my computer until I see how much LG’s watch is going to sell for…