With each Google I/O, the tech giant announces its latest software and hardware developments and this year’s iteration which is in it’s fourth year running will be no different. Worth noting, Google is turning 21 year this year.
Here’s Everything We Are Expecting
Pixel 3a and 3a XL
Google is rumored to launch these two mid-range phones, little siblings to the flagship Pixel 3 series they launched late last year. Snapdragon 670 and 710 processor will power the 3a and 3a XL respectively. They’ll also pack the same 12.2MP single lens as their flagship counterpart which would be a huge selling point – getting Pixel equality photos for cheap. Unfortunately, Google’s AI photography prowess might be hindered by the mid-range processors. The Pixel 3a will go for $399 while the 3a XL will sell from $479.
— The Verge (@verge) May 3, 2019
This will be good news to the ears of smart watch enthusiasts since Google skipped the Pixel watch on lasts years I/O event. The smartwatch is rumored to launch with the Pixel 4 so a May release date is highly unlikely.
Android 10.0 Q
The official launch of the latest version of Android has always been the Hallmark of Google I/O events and this year we expect to see the final version of Android Q especially with it’s betas already out.
With Android Q expect certain new features such as Bubbles which is similar to Facebook’s Messenger Chat heads. This feature has been native to other customised versions of Android such as on LG. Android will be copying this feature just as it did with Samsung’s Split screen ability. You’ll also get deeper controls over permissions as well as support for Folding phones despite their recent issues. Expect HDR10+, screen recording, essy WiFi sharing, deeper access to depth maps for Bokeh effect in portrait shots. OS-wide dark mode is also expected especially for users with smartphones that rock OLED screens. The sharing feature is getting a revamp too, finally.
Expect privacy-infused features such as fike-based encryption, improved lockdown mode, more controls over how apps can access personal data such as your location.
The mysterious new operating system is expected to be at least mentioned in the event. We still don’t know if the new OS is replacing Android or Chrome OS and hopefully this will be made clear at the event. What we know so far is that Fuschia supports Android apps and may be the bridge between Android and Laptop but who knows, we’ll have to watch and see.
Last year, Google made A.I duplex official and it could book appointments for you and it wowed the audience. So we expect to hear if the rollout will go global as it’s now restricted to the US for both Android and iOS users.
Another feature announced at CES 2019 was Google Assistant Connect that is likely to be mentioned. With Google Assistant Connect, third party manufacturers can easily connect their smart devices to the assistant. This is Google’s way of pushing more devices to come baked with the Assistant in the recent race to see who’s assistant gets more devices with Amazon’s Alexa.
Nest Hub Max
This is a bigger version of the Google Home Hub Smart display rumored to rock a 10″ display, built-in camera for video calls and stereo speakers for consuming multimedia content. Google dropped it’s own for Nest as the new device is expected to join it’s other siblings, the Nest Hub(Nest Home Hub)
This new smart device could help the tech giant compete with it’s rivals such as Amazon and Facebook’s Portal.
Google Stadia is Google’s foray into online gaming streaming services and allows users with a high speed internet connection to play the latest high spec’d games. We expect to hear more details about Stadia at the event including availability, game titles already on board and pricing obviously.
What else to expect?
Other things that will take center stage will include how Google will commit to protecting users privacy especially with all the privacy scandals that have rocked the company. Hopefully Sundar Pichai makes a commitment just like his counterpart, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg who professed that the future is private at this year’s F8 but is it?
Just as they did with Duplex, we expect Google to bring it’s AI prowess to it’s other apps such as Gmail, Maps and News. Google Assistant is also expected to get new tricks up it’s sleeves (Did you know it can read you a bedtime story?)
Augmented Reality is also expected to feature just like last year where Google Maps got the feature that allowed step by step protected directions using AR.
The event is happening on May 7 starting at 10 AM Pacific (6 PM West African Time). Stay tuned for more updates.
Stream it here.