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Thursday, June 28, 2012

Review of Day One of the Google I/O Developers Conference

Wow. What a day yesterday was in the tech world!

The first day of the 2012 Google I/O developer Conference was epic. The keynote was an experience. If you want to see the Google I/O Keynote, here are a couple of places to watch it:

Twit TV Live Special

Watch Chris Pirillo Watch the Keynote

Here is a brief overview of what happened.


Google announced that its hardware partners have sold over 400 million Android devices. Last year, that number was 100 million.

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

The next update to Android is called Jelly Bean. To be more precise, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, so it is an incremental update to IAndroid 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwhich. The update was part of Project Butter and uses a new search interface they call cards that make it easier to display information that users typically search for.

Introducing the Nexus 7 Tablet

The Nexus 7 tablet was an anticipated move by Google and some details of it were leaked prior the official release. The Nexus 7 is a 7" tablet that ships with Jelly Bean and is Google's answer to the Amazon Kindle Fire and is a distribution platform for Google Play much like the Kindle Fire is a distribution platform for the Amazon Store. It retails for $199 and will ship in the middle of July. It will be the first tablet that has Google Chrome installed as the default browser. You can order yours by clicking here.

The Nexus Q Introduction

The Nexus Q is spherical device that is called a "social streaming media player" that is remote controlled by any nearby Android-operated smartphone or tablet. It seems to be a digital juke box that delivers music and video during parties and retails for $299.

You can also see the official Nexus Q Video.

Google+ Tablet App and Events

I couldn't find stand-alone video for this section, so you'll have to watch it as part of the coverage I've linked to at the top of this article.

A sorely overdue Google+ tablet app was introduced that brings the full G+ experience to tablets and phones. Also introduced was G+ Events. This allows you to create events and invite people to them.

*Personal note* This led to a period of a few hours last night where I received invitations to over a hundred events...most of them virtual and people who were over-exhuberantly playing with this new feature. Thankfully, it calmed down by the time I logged off for the evening.

The EPIC Project Glass Demo

This was the most epic product demo in the history of the tech world. It started when Sergey Brin Kanye'd Vic Gundotra with a "time sensitive update".

He presented a demonstration of the Google "Project Glass" which is a wearable camera that includes a speaker, microphone, touchpad, gyroscope, compass, accelerometers and is wirelessly connected to a phone or tablet that the user carries.

Five people wearing the devices jumped out of a blimp (correction: it was a zeppelin) over the Moscone Center where the conference was taking place, landed on the roof, handed them off to bicyclists who jumped to another roof, then handed the devices off to people who rapalled down the side of the building and then the devices were bicycled into the building and into the auditorium and onto the stage to thunderous applause. All this was streamed live from the point of view of the people wearing the devices.

Here is the polished video of the demo:

Then Sergey announced that all those developers who were present could buy the prototype for $1500 and it will be avaialble in January 2013 for them to play with and use to develop apps for the new device.

Other Updates, Other Thoughts

Why is Google releasing a tablet that will surely make the company close to no money? There is no chance Google can produce such a high quality tablet for much less than $200, so the margins on the Nexus 7 have to be tiny. The answer is the same answer to the question, “Why is Google giving away Android for free?” It is also the same reason that for Google, Android activations are the most important metric and the one mentioned at almost every opportunity. Namely, for an advertising company, what matters most are impressions. Users. The audience. The money is there, it always has been, but first and foremost, Google needs to be everywhere.

Source: The Paradox of the Apple Google War Brought to a Whole New Level by Hillel Fuld

Google+ Platform Basics

Google+ History API will bring in your past updates from around the web

Meet Google Nexus 7, Kindle Killer By Joe Wilcox

Spec Comparison: New iPad v. Nexus 7 v. Kindle Fire v. Surface via Paul Allen

Made in the USA: Google's Nexus Q is symbolic and significant via Kenyan Mobli

Twit TV

I'm a fan of Twit TV and have included the shows they've posted so far where their hosts discuss the events of the first day of I/O 2012, along with links to where you can download the video and audio of the show...

This Week In Google 153: Did I Mention it Takes Pictures?

Tech News Today 351: Falling for Glass (video not uploaded to Youtube yet)

TWiT Live Specials 131: Google I/O Keynote Day 1 (this is good if you missed the live presentation of the keynote)

TWiT TV on Google+

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