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The future of GoogleCNET's Kara Tsuboi talks with senior writer Casey Newton about five things we can expect from Google in 2013.
-Hey everyone, I'm Kara Tsuboi. Welcome to The Future Of a show where we take a look at the biggest companies and what's in store for them in the year ahead. Right now I'm joined by Casey Newton, Senior writer who covers Google, the company, obviously. Casey, what are your thoughts in 2013. What do you think that company and you as the [unk] writer are really gonna-- to be focused on? -Well, I think we're gonna see a ton coming out of Google in the next year. -Sure. -And the first thing that I would probably mention would be their futuristic Google X Division. -Oh, that sounds so cool. -It is. They are working on two things that you've probably already heard about one of which is Google Glass. So these are the-- -Absolutely. -Wearable computers that kind of give you a heads up display of the world around you and in the first part of 2013 the developers pre-order them earlier this year or they can get their hands on them. So they're gonna [unk] right there on software for them, try all kinds of things. -Do you expect it will hit the public market then later in a year? -No. Chances are, we won't see them be available to consumers in 2013-- -Okay. -But we are gonna get a lot closer. -Oh, that video is so compelling whenever you watch the Google Glass stuff. -Absolutely. And remember, this is also the same division that's working on self-driving cars. Google has gotten a lot of legislation pass this year that lets them drive those cars on roads on various states. -State of Nevada being one. -Being most recent. And that's what I think we're gonna see a lot more out of that. -Very cool. -I know. -Google also is very busy in the hardware division. I'm sure you're gonna see some developments in that section. -Absolutely. So, you know, we're in the holiday season. Now Google just refreshed its lineup of Nexus products. These are the Google-branded tablets and smartphones that it makes with other manufacturers. So there some real questions out there about. How much attraction are these devices going to get? We're seeing the first 10-inch Nexus tablet. Is that going to sell, be competitive with the iPad, time will tell. But expect to see Google rolled these new versions of those next year and continue to try to compete with its many, many competitors in that space. -We can talk about hardware without obviously talking about Google phones and I think I've read somewhere that more people are now using Android than even iOS these days. -That's right. Android market share has really been on the march this year. It is the fastest, growing operating system in the world and not poses some interesting questions for 2013. Historically, developers have been building for iOS first so you see a lot of the best apps coming to Apple devices first. -Yeah. -But as more and more people buy Android devices, the questions, well our developers gonna say, you know, we're gonna start building free Android first. And that's definitely something we're gonna be watching in 2013. -Now, let's try to talk about Google without talking about what even Google started as in that search, I imagine hopefully we're gonna see some search developments in the next year. -That's right. Google did 2 really interesting things this year with search. One is that, they created this thing called the knowledge graph which is their effort to map out connections between all sorts of different things. So, if you search for an actress, say you'll start to see a little box on the side of the search window that tells you about other actors that person may have worked with or here are some of the thumbs they were in. Google wants to bring this to a lot more different parts of the search experience. So you're gonna start to see more and more of those connections surface when you start typing in your queries. So I think that's gonna be really big next year. The other thing is they introduce this thing Google Now which is a kind of predictive search so that when you take out your phone, it'll say, you need to leave to get to your next appointment because there's traffic right now. You might wanna take this road because it's close. That's only available on devices that run the latest version of Android right now. Next year, you're gonna start to see a lot more people starting to use that. Google's gonna invest a lot of resources in developing these kind of new world of search where you don't need to typing up a query. -So 2013 sounds busy enough as it is but is there one final thing that you've got your eye on for next year? -There's an open question of an anti-trust case. Is the U.S. Federal Trade Commission going to come in and say, Google, you have violated competition laws. There are some within-- in Washington who believed that Google is favoring its own search results over those of its competitors so will the FTC come in and say, Google you need to change the way you're presenting search results that could have a few different effects on the company. One might be that Google agrees to make some minor changes. One might be that they fight it and it would be a huge loss it. Some who have compared it to having the potential impact of the anti-trust case against Microsoft had a couple of decades ago. -And what would the impact be to the consumer or the user? -Right. So it could change what your search results look like. -Yeah. -Maybe when you started searching for things you wouldn't see Google products like, you know, Google Maps or its own restaurant ratings float to the top, maybe you'd start seeing Yelp or other products rise a little bit higher in the search. -Yeah, interesting. Well Casey, thank you so much. Certainly it's going to be a busy year ahead. Best of luck to you and thank you everyone for watching The Future Of. I'm Kara Tsuboi, cnet.com.