April 21, 2013

What We Expect To See At Google I/O This Year

With Google I/O less than one month away, there's no reason not to be excited about what is to come. Last year there was no shortage of excitement- Google Now, Google Glass, Jellybean, and much more. Now the question is, will this year be just as exciting, or could it be even more? We will find out soon, but for those of you who can't wait here's a list of what's expected to be announced. Just remember that we don't actually know how much of this is true.

Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie
It's become pretty well known that the next version of Android will be called Key Lime Pie, and there's a big chance it'll be version 5.0. With Google I/O being a huge event for the company it doesn't make sense to me why they would do a minor upgrade. With this will come the new messaging service, a game center, speed enhancements, and probably more surprises for us. Maybe even split screen for multiple apps. Who knows?

Babel, the new messaging service
There has been a lot of news about Google making a new messaging service that unifies its current mess of messengers. Overtime it was confirmed that it would be named Babel, and some pictures have been leaked of it as well. Expect to see this released as a main feature of Key Lime Pie as well as apps for iOS, other Android phones, Chrome, and maybe even a desktop application. We don't know what all features to expect in this, but pictures, emoticons, and video chatting will definitely be there.

Game Center
This news is much more recent, but files were found that show a game center is in the works. Notifications, chat, and leaderboards will be part of this. iOS has something similar to this already, and knowing Google they will make sure it has something that makes it more powerful than its counterpart.

Google Now coming to desktop and iOS (maybe even older Android phones?)
Some time ago Google Now was confirmed for desktop, and a leaked video shows it is coming to iOS as well. For desktop, maybe this will launch with the new notification area for Chrome. On iOS, this will be built into the current Google Search app. Many Android users who are not running Jellybean (and therefore don't have Google Now) are upset about this....but maybe they'll bring it to all versions of Android (or at least Gingerbread and higher?).

A new Nexus tablet
Last year when the Nexus 7 was released, it became an instant hit. It only makes sense to make another one! The new Nexus 7 (or whatever it will be called) will definitely feature Key Lime Pie, have an improved processor, and a better screen. As for price, it'll probably be $200, which is the same as the current Nexus 7. What makes me wonder though is if the current Nexus 7 will still be on sale for cheaper. Usually Google stops selling a device once a newer one is released, but maybe they're going to keep this one for a little longer.

An improved Nexus 4
Given that the Nexus 4 will be around 6 months old at the time of Google I/O it does't make sense for Google to release a whole new phone. However, they may upgrade the storage and perhaps even enable LTE on the devices (in case you didn't know, all Nexus 4 devices have a dormant LTE chip). LTE has been one of the lacking features in the Nexus 4, and if it was enabled people would celebrate in happiness. Don't forget that months after announcing the Nexus 7 they did this same thing by upgrading the available storages and later adding ones that work on mobile networks.

Nexus Q
Remember that from last year? The social streaming device? If you don't, well it was a product announced last year at Google I/O that was "canceled" until a future time so more features could be added (it was thought to be too expensive with few features). Maybe it'll make a reappearance this year.

Google Glass Announcements
Yes Google Glass is already out in the wild, but it isn't available for public sales just yet. Maybe we will get some news on that. They did it last year. Maybe even another skydiving demo?