Google I/O kicks off tomorrow - here's what to expect


Google I/O 2018 kicks off Tuesday, May 8, at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California.

Are you a fan of Google's Android Auto platform?

Google today released version 1.0 of Android Things, letting manufacturers build and maintain Internet of Things (IoT) devices using its technologies. Therefore, Apple enabled gesture controls, where gestures from the bottom of the screen completed the functions that were previously controlled by the home button, such as going to the home screen, activating Siri or opening up the app switcher screen.

If Google has its way, more of your smart home products will be powered by its latest take on Android.

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And, as odd as this may seem, Microsoft seems to offer some important advantages over Google, which has struggled to gain acceptance of Android outside of smartphones. In a blog post, the company details a few new tweaks that are coming to the system, starting with the arrival of better group messaging.

While the first stable build of the platform packs a number of improvements and tweaks outlined below, its overall goal remains unchanged, with Google still pitching it as the ultimate solution for IoT manufacturers interested in cutting software development, maintenance, and general deployment costs, thus being able to commit more resources to other aspects of their products such as hardware and marketing or simply increase profit margins. But that doesn't mean Volvo's decision to lean on Google was an obvious one. It also has four HDMI ports (presumably three in, one out) and supports HDMI switching in the soundbar itself, so it can act as a basic AV receiver as well. But for folks on the technical side of things, Android Things 1.0 could open a whole new set of opportunities.

As part of this partnership, Google apps and services will be embedded within Volvo cars. Google also points out that the Link Bar is the first in a series of hybrid Assistant/Android TV devices, so we can probably count on seeing more in the near future (or even during I/O this week, but that's just a guess).

We'll also likely get some more insight into a gesture-based navigation that takes some cues from the iPhone X. Here's a quick run through of everything we all expect as of this calendar year's Google I/O.