Google I/O 2022 in progress. During the event, we expect to hear from Google about new tools for developers, improvements included in Android 13, and possibly some new hardware. In the past, the inaugural Google I/O keynote has also included presentations about Chrome, Chrome OS, Android TV/Google TV and Google Assistant. We also saw previews of future technology during the keynote.
Below you'll find everything that Google has announced so far during the opening speech.
Google Translate is getting new languages
Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai took to the stage to launch Google I/O with a joke by making certain his microphone wasn't muted, having always spent the past two years starting his meetings without sound. Pichai then moved on to the new Google updates, giving highlights such as the number of airstrike alerts Google sent out in Ukraine, and noting that Google Translate is gaining 24 new languages.
Google Maps gets an immersive new rendering that makes Street View 3D, Pichai also showed off a new holographic mode in Google Maps that lets you check out specific cities that look like Google Earth images combined with Street View, but you can not only check out cities but also look on inside companies.
Auto-generated YouTube segments, audio scripts
Google was able to automatically create segments for YouTube videos, but through improvements to the service, Google plans to automatically add segment tags to 80 million videos by the end of the year. Google will also roll out automatic transcription of videos, making it easier to read the audio in the video. This is also a fantastic accessibility feature.
Google Docs gets an automatic abstract
Here's a cool feature: Google Docs will soon have a abstract feature that gives you a ramp notes version of a long document so you can get the gist of what's included in just a few seconds. This is especially useful for those who often receive assembly notes and don't find documentation to summarize the meeting.
Google reviews the future of search
Search is arguably the most important Google product, and during the Google I/O convention, the company showcased new tools and features that will appear in Search. For example, you can take a picture of the part you need to repair the house and then add the term “near me” to the query, and Google will find that part in inventory at a local company. The same goes for taking a picture of a plate of food. Multisearch Near Me will launch, globally, later this year for English language users.
Another feature coming to Search, more specifically Google Lens, will allow you to scan a grocery store aisle and display an overlay of information about the products in front of you. The example used during the keyword was examining a rack of chocolate bars and trying to identify items that met specific criteria. Or you're looking for a particular bottle of wine or bar of soap that is fragrance-free. This feature is called Scene Exploration and it will be launched later this year.
Google's Real Tone initiative will go beyond the Pixel camera
Google Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro cameras have a feature called Real Tone which is designed to take accurate photos of people with dark skin. Using the Monk's Skin Tone Scale, Google is looking at how the scale is applied to other products. For example, Google is starting to use the scale in Google Photos and adding the ability to sort search results by skin tone.
A new Real Tone will be released to Google Photos later this year.
Google also announced that it has unlocked the Skin Tone Scale, which you can view at skintone.google.
“Hey Google” is no longer required to activate Google Assistant
To make Google Assistant even more accessible, you can use a new feature that's rolling out starting nowadays called Look and Talk. Just look at the Nest Hub Max and start talking. You will see that Google Assistant is waiting for you to ask a question after looking at the screen.
The Nest Hub Max also expands Quick Phrases to bypass using Hey Google to control matters like a Nest thermostat or turn off lights.
Furthermore, the Google Assistant will become more patient after being summoned. Instead of time running out and saying he doesn't recognize what you're asking, or trying to give an answer to the wrong question, the assistant will wait, and "encourage" you to finish your thinking.
LaMDA 2 debuts in the AI test kitchen
Google's LaMDA AI tool built around having a conversation about random topics is getting its very own AI Test Kitchen app. There are three ways for users to interact with LaMDA using one of three different modes: Imagine It, Talk About It, and List It. Access to the app will open over the coming months.
There was also a demonstration of another AI tool called the Stimulus Thought Series. I don't understand much about AI training, but the demo that Pichai gave us made it seem that it would be easier for the AI to understand the multiple questions that are applicable, but in terms of different data sets.
New privacy and security features for users, including virtual credit card numbers
Google has many new features coming to its suite of services that will make users' data more secure and ensure that their private information is kept private. For example, Android and Google Chrome users will soon be able to send virtual credit card numbers when making online purchases, helping to prevent fraud.
There's also a new account security feature that alerts users provided there are additional steps they need to take to secure their account. The alert can be as simple as a reminder to enable two-step authentication. Google is also expanding its phishing survey to include Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides.
Whether you find any of your personal information, such as a phone number, address, or email address, in Google search results, there will soon be an automated way to ask Google to remove your information.
Google My Ad Center will launch later this year so you can control the ads you see and the data associated with your account.
Abstract of what's new in Android 13
Android 13 has been in beta for two months now, but Google has spent some time going over some of the features users can expect to see when Android 13 launches later this year. Materials that you extend to more areas of the interface, and will allow you to use different languages for different applications.
Security is a major support pillar for Android 13, as Google is touting its work with carriers and device makers to adopt RCS, a service that provides end-to-end encryption for standard SMS messages. And of course, the company took a look at Apple's lack of RCS support. Maybe with iOS 16?
Google Wallet is getting an upgrade to include your driver's license or a digital ID for Wallet later this year. Android will let you share your ID using NFC or QR code. The Wallet update will be rolling out in the coming weeks.
Later this year, Wear OS will get an emergency SOS feature that will allow you to request help directly from the watch. The feature will work in a similar way to the Pixel's ability to detect a car accident and call for help in an emergency.
Android tablets got a big upgrade with Android 13
Google has shown new features like split screen and drag and drop apps that will be available on Android tablets in Android 13 and multitasking with paired apps. Google also announced that it is updating 20 of its apps to make them look and work better on larger screens. Google Play will also start showing apps for tablets while searching.
Android and Google devices work better together
Google works with hardware partners from all different industries to give access to its streaming service for music, movies, and photos across more devices. Other features like copy and paste shared between Android phone and tablet are also available.
Matter, the smart home platform set to launch this fall. Google plans to use its Fast Twosome feature to help you set up wireless earbuds or any smart home devices that include Matter.
Android 13 is currently in beta for Pixel devices, but more hardware partners will soon give users access to the beta version. You can see the list of devices in the image above.
Google ads for Pixel devices
Google owns many new Pixel devices across multiple verticals. The announcements about Pixel devices started with the Pixel phone, to highlight what the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro brought to the Android makers' lineup. According to Google, the Pixel 6 is the fastest selling Pixel phone ever.
Google debuted the Pixel 6a, a more expensive version of the Pixel 6 line, priced at $449. The Pixel 6a will use the same Google Tensor processor as its more expensive siblings, have two rear cameras, and have the same overall design as the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro.
Pixel 6a is available for $449. Pre-orders begin July 21, with deliveries beginning July 28.
Google has given us a sneak peek at the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro, with a slightly new design, both of which are coming this fall. We don't know much about them, apart from the fact that they will be using the next generation Google Tensor and launching with Android 13.
Pixel Buds Pro is also official. The new wireless earbuds feature active noise cancellation and longer battery life. It's also sweat and water resistant, and features a multi-point connection to associate and switch between multiple Bluetooth-connected devices at the same time. Spatial Audio is coming to Pixel Buds Pro later this year.
Buds Pro go on sale July 21 for $199 and start shipping July 28.
Rick Osterloh appeared on the I/O platform to announce the long-rumored Pixel Watch. The watch will launch later this year, alongside the Pixel 7 line. It looks just like the watch left in a restaurant a few weeks ago — and it runs Wear OS with deep integration with Fitbit.
Osterloh also took a while to launch the Pixel Tablet which will debut in 2023. The Pixel tablet looks a lot like the interface of the Nest Hub, only without the base.
What is your favorite part? I'm looking forward to Android 13 and the new Pixel devices, including the Pixel Watch.