Google will control Android TV, Android Auto and Android Wear
Services & Software
Brian Tong here and welcome to Googlicious for all the Google goodness that we can pack inside of a show.
Now the Googs really delivered an all-out assault on almost every new product category imaginable, at Google IO with their plans to target the living room with their Android TV, which still has a lot of challenges with manufacturers to become a viable platform after years of fail.
There's also an improved Chrome cast that can mirror exactly what's on your phone and can be shared among multiple users at the same time.
It was probably one of the most exciting relevant updates.
They're also ready to get behind the wheel and be a part of your driving experience with Android Auto.
They showcase an Apple handoff-like capability between Android phones and pro-books and their full roll-out of Android-wear with big time support coming out of the gate with the LG G watch.
And Samsung's Gear Live, that attendees got to take home.
And the Moto 360 the product that received the loudest cheers.
Well developers will get theirs later but it's still coming to retail later this summer.
And Google pretty much delivered on almost every rumor we predicted, so let's get into some more of the nitty gritty after the keynote.
Now Google and Android have always had that label of fragmented thrown at them, but in an interview with Ars Technica, Google engineering director David Burke officially confirmed, that OEMs will not be allowed to overlay their interfaces on top of Android TV, Android Auto, and Android Wear.
Now, Burke reiterated that all three of the company's new initiatives will have design and software done only by Google.
It's really a change of philosophy and a sign that they are really looking to take control of their platform now more than ever.
I was also just a little disappointed that Android Wear didn't wow me that much at all of the keynotes and in person.
It's new, and different, but it's not doing anything compelling that makes me want to buy a smartwatch.
I'll still use my phone to tell me the time, even if I'm actually wearing a watch, and I know a lot of you do the same thing.
Now will the sexy round screen of the Moto 360 change my mind?
It's my favorite smartwatch I've seen so far but that's still a no, so, maybe ASUS is the answer, who according to TechCrunch is also working on a budget friendly smartwatch of their own, powered by Android Wear, with a price tag between 100 and $150.
That's like buying a swatchwatch.
And I challenge them to make one at that price that looks better than this deep berry one.
Alright, the biggest change we'll see in Android across all platforms is designed, like we thought.
And president of design, Matias Duarte, showcased what they called material design, to give a sense of physical paper and depth.
That is more colorful and helps really bring more dimension to Android's flat look and feel, which is really trending across almost every mobile platform.
And if you guys wanna check it out for yourself and you're familiar with using the Android SDK, you can download the Android L Developer preview at this official link on screen to check it out.
And yes, you're welcome.
There are also standalone Androidware applications.
Hitting the Play Store right now, like Wear Calc, which is a calculator for your smart watch.
And Wear Compass, which is a compass.
Reports say Google has asked some of the bigger name companies developing apps, to hold off until July 7th, so a flood of new ones is expected to arrive in the next week.
And what about products coming out way down the line?
Well during Google IO session, the Googs announced it's partnering with LG to build a tablet that's part of its project Tango program and will be released to consumers next year.
Project Tango lets you 3D scan your surrounding.
And has huge potential for real time mapping, giving our devices a real human skill to understanding of space and motion.
They also talked about Project Ara, Google's modular phone project, where they showed off a functional prototype that booted up and then would freeze, but they also offered a challenge for developers and anyone who can build a module.
Let people do something with their phone that they can't do right now.
And you could win a prize of $100,000.
Now Google is still hoping to release a Developer Preview for Project Ara this Fall.
But guys and gals, the giveaway.
That was by far the coolest, was the makeshift virtual reality headset made of cardboard that Google gave out at IO called, wait for it, Cardboard.
The G men and women posted the parts you would need to do it yourself, but why go through all the trouble when San Francisco's own DoDo Case, who makes all kinds of killer iPhone and iPad cases is selling the tool kit to make the cardboard headset yourself for just $19.95.
You can even use the promo code USA 1 to get 25% off, and I'm just looking out for you, this thing.
It's pretty sweet.
Like, I can see all of San Fran.
Wow, the city is in here.
Alright, but this is not the sweetest story of the week.
That goes to Tracking Point, the smart weapon company that released a video of its shot view software being used to broadcast a sniper rifle's image feed through a set of Smith Optics IO Recon Goggles.
The marksman doesn't even look directly through his scope, he only uses the goggles and nails an explosive-filled soda bottle 500 yards away, like that.
All right, that's gonna do it for this week's show.
Email us at email@example.com or tweet me at briantong.
Thanks so much for watching and we'll see you guys next time for some more of that Googlicious.