Tech giant Google just wrapped up its annual I/O conference at Mountain View, California
The Google I/O is an annual conference showcasing some of the company's upcoming technological advancement in mobile, web and enterprise applications. The 'I/O' stands for input and output.
Like the years before, the company has unveiled a number of goodies, but these two announcements are the biggest takeaway from the conference:
Introducing Android N, the latest next version of Google’s mobile OS, which is currently at its last stages of development
Android N is Google's next phone and tablet operating system update that's been so thoroughly refined, the company is officially more than halfway through the English alphabet.
Google has announced that there will be over 250 features on the OS, including Android VR and multi-screen support
The Play Store, StreetView, Photos, YouTube and Play Movies will all support VR, allowing you to jump into games, locations and videos - all via Google's Daydream VR platform. Daydream is due to be released later this year, so it's unlikely to be included in the initial Android N launch. Like other VR devices, VR glasses and goggles are needed.
True multitasking support is finally arriving on Android. Samsung and LG phones have incorporated the feature into their skins, but Google is finally including the functionality into the OS.
Android N allows several apps to share the screen at once. For example, a user could split the screen, viewing a web page on the left side while composing an email on the right side. The user experience depends on the device.
And for the first time, you get to have a say in naming the OS! Google is really unsure which desert Android N is going to be named after.
In a bid to rival Facebook's Messaging app, Google is coming out with its own communication tool - Allo
Allo (pronounced aloe, not allo) will run on both Android Phones and the Apple iPhone and many have said this is one of the smartest communication tools to date.
Just how smart is Allo?
Allo will also feature Google assistant, a conversational interface for users to ask questions from Google
For example, you can set up a conversation with Google and ask it all sorts of questions. It'll respond with the stuff you've come to expect from typing into a Google search bar.
Allo will be available for download later this year for iOS and Android, of course.
Aside from Android N and Allo, Google has also announced a home assistant, Android Wear 2.0 amongst others
Home is a wireless speaker with a built-in voice-powered assistant. Call it your personal butler, the Google Home answers your questions, plays your music, and controls some of your home automation gadgets.
The update gives the UI a comprehensive Material Design-themed overhaul, enables compatible watches to do more without a phone attached, introduces some new input methods to make communication easier.