Google unveils movies, music and more for Android

Google kicked off its annual Google I/O conference for developers with a collection of announcements to enhance the Android platform, including updates to the OS firmware and new multimedia services.

Google kicked off its annual Google I/O conference for developers with a collection of announcements to enhance the Android platform, including updates to the OS firmware and new multimedia services.

The new Android Honeycomb platform will receive an incremental update with the introduction of version 3.1. Improvements available in this update include an extended multitasking panel, adding more recent tasks than the five currently accessible in Honeycomb 3.0.1, and enhanced stock widgets to take advantage of the larger screen real estate.

Google also unveiled its new movie rental and cloud music storage services. Users of Android Market will soon be able to rent videos that can be played on any recent Android device or on a PC web browser via YouTube. The service will be limited to Verizon-branded Motorola Xoom tablets initially, but will be available to devices running Android 2.2+ in the future.

Music Beta will soon give Android users a place to store their personal music collections remotely, allowing them to access their music across a number of compatible devices. Google Music and Movie Rentals services are only available in the US at this time, with Google Australia telling CNET that it has no timeline available for when these service will be launched down under.

Google also shared updated figures regarding the Android platform, telling the audience of developers that Android has surpassed 100 million activations globally, with 400,000 new devices added each day. The Android Market has also increased fourfold since last year's I/O conference, and now offers more than 200,000 apps.

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