8 things to expect from Google IO 2014 as Announcements

Google IO is an annual conference conducted by Google to unveil different technology innovations and products which they have been working on. Google IO is just few hours away from now. Google was traditionally focussed on Consumer technologies; However, in the recent years, they have definitely made some good steps towards Enterprise Tech with Cloud, Chrome etc. If you are keen to watch the Keynote Live, you can check this link (June 25th, 9:00 AM PDT).

Update: Watch the Keynote here:

Firstly, with Vic writing about his plans beyond Google, it would be interesting to see who would present the Keynote this year. Here are somethings which I expect as Announcements in this year’s Google IO 2014. Let’s see, how many of these are blessed.

Google-IO-20141. Additions to the Android Ecosystem

No prizes for guessing, the top priority of Google has been its Android ecosystem and in the past year we have seen more Android devices hitting the market. The keynote may start with the statistics on devices and the Android footprints on these devices; followed with a couple of tech companies or startups who has used the platform to the best and unleash some new creative techs. I am not expecting a new version of Android; the KitKat on itself has been a very refined operating system. I would expect more and more devices to get upgraded to KitKat and then, lets move forward when Google make their plans for the next version of Android. I am not expecting a new Nexus Phone either. However, with rumours we may see a HTC tablet as a Nexus device. Not very sure on the form-factor, but it would be great, if they stick to 8′ and not something bigger than that.  For developers, we may see a new Android Development Studio to help better drag-drop controls.  We may also see some great applications on Home Automation solutions. We may definitely see some refinements w.r.t App Notifications etc  and that exactly brings to the next key area, wearables or rather, Android Wear.

2. App Readiness for Wearable Computing

There have been considerable number of consumer devices which are already announced/available in Market. The Google Glass was definitely one of them for the luxury segment; however, we had some smart watches announcements from players like Samsung, LG and Motorola. My favourite being the Moto 360.  The wearable technology has pretty much been a buzz word in the past year and I’m sure, Google is going to address it with some very smart APIs and use-cases which can make these devices more meaningful in our daily lives.  Continuing from the previous point on Android advancements, the wearables play a crucial role in designing the right interface for these in-app notifications, be it for Messages, Emails, Navigation, Google Now updates etc. Also we may see some good amount of guidelines on working with the sensors available on these watches for Google Fit and other Health tracking applicationsI won’t be surprised if the attendees of Google IO walk out with a smart watch. 

3. Cloud Adoption and BigQuery

In the recent months, we saw some great efforts from Google in arranging for the Cloud road shows to talk to developers around the country to take head on with Amazon and Microsoft on the Cloud business. They  had showcased every reason on why should one choose the App Engine / Compute Engine against an AWS or a Microsoft Azure solution. A couple of months ago, they even introduced Managed VMs  and unveiled new lower pricing for Google Cloud Platform users through Sustained Use Discounts that the company made available to users who run large projects on virtual machines. Under the new pricing scheme, users will save more as they use more virtual machines in the Google Cloud. To know more on the Sustained Use Discounts, read here. This Google IO, we may hear more reasons to choose Google Cloud Platforms.

 4. ChromeBooks

Well, ChromeBooks have been here and there for a while now. Though the idea and the concept of the devices was revolutionary, it never took off to a great extent; mainly due to the price reasons and its offline functionalities. Hopefully, we should see more devices in this segment and some advancements in the chromium software.

5. Polymer

Google did speak about Polymer at the Google IO last year, however, it was very much an early preview. This time, we should see more applications of these components. Polymer is a new type of library for the web, targeting the modern web platform, and useful for building web applications based on Web Components. Polymer attempts to embrace HTML as much as possible. Polymer has a compatibility on most of the modern browsers and mobile devices too. 

6. Google Ads

Advertisements and Monetisation has always been one of the areas which gets addressed at every Google IO. This year, we may again see some more statistics on the percentage break-ups for App Developers and guidelines on how they can design their apps for effective ad placements.

7. Consumer Techs – Maps, Wallet, Google Domains etc

Of-course, its always not Developers, there would be a good amount of mention on the new dimensions of Maps for Google. I am also guessing more disk space for Google Drive users.  Wallet has been there for sometime now; again this technology hasn’t taken off really well. Recently Google did add Wallet Support on Gmail too. However, we should expect to see some more applications of this technology. Few days back, Google also announced their Domain registration services as an invite only service. Tradionally, one looks out to search for the best domain name for their business, websites etc. Who better knows names than Google, this one is going to take off pretty awesome.  There are already some features listed out for Google Domains. Some of them being, no Additional charges for Private registration, Branded emails, customisable sub domains, and the most awesome scalable Google Infrastructure for stability. Very soon, we may see some writers choosing Google platform for their websites – right from buying the domain, hosting and running WordPress through Google App Engine, and using Google Apps for other applications like Drive, Emails, and Docs.

8. Design Guidelines

No Google IO is complete without a good amount of emphasis on Design principles and best practices. We may see more guidelines on designing better UX for Applications. Be it web, Mobile or Wearables. Most Importantly, the concept of one ecosystem and unified experience across devices. 

Now All Eyes on the Keynote which is just few hours away. Let’s circle back post Google IO. Do let me know, if I may have missed anything in this short article.

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