Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Industry | By Dora Warner

Google I/O 2017 - Top 5 things that we've seen so far

Google I/O 2017 - Top 5 things that we've seen so far

You could go and watch the two hour long keynote, or you could check out T3's excellent condensed notes.

The goal of Android Go is to get computing into the hands of more people by creating a great smartphone experience on all Android devices with 1GB or less of memory.

Unfortunately, it only works with YouTube Red (the paid US-only subscription plan for YouTube) and video chat app Google Duo for now.

Google Lens is finally here, and it looks pretty cool. For example, Lens could automatically remove the fence obscuring this image of a girl playing softball.

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With the new Google Home calling feature, users will be able to make phone calls in the USA and Canada for free, but won't be able to call other Home devices. This will be great for friends' houses with insane long, random Wi-Fi passwords that you never get right the first time.

Google is also crafting a lighter version of Android, referred to as "Go", designed for maximum performance on low-priced, entry-level smartphones in developing countries where internet bandwidth is lean or expensive. At the Google I/O 2017 event, the tech giant confirmed that its digital assistant will now accept text-based queries. Now it seems Assistant has attended a butler school, and picked up some new tricks along the way.

What's more, the assistant will soon be able to complete transactions and supply information about objects captured by the smartphone's camera, executives said.

Pointing the camera at a restaurant front and seeing instant reviews on the screen is, for instance, just one of the things this feature is capable of.

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The US search behemoth has also promised to improve battery life with Android O, saying the new software would be more "wise" to apps running in the background on mobile devices. As such, the company is now opening Instant Apps to all developers.

On a positive note, the company has added more language support for Google Assistant including Brazilian Portuguese, French, German and Japanese, and by the end of the year, the Assistant will support Italian, Korean and Spanish.

"To get started building an instant app, head over to developer.android.comand download the latest preview of Android Studio 3.0 and the Android Instant Apps SDK", explained Jonathan Karmel, product manager at Google. The really smart innovation here is that if your partner or housemate says "call mum", it'll call theirs, rather than yours.

"The Assistant is already available on more than 100 million devices and starting today, we're bringing the Google Assistant to iPhones", said a spokesperson.

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