Google I/O 2012: What To Expect

We’re less than two days out from the kickoff of Google’s I/O 2012 conference and the rumors are flying around like bugs to a street light. We realize that it can be hard to keep up with all of the rumors and you may just want a simple guide to what we can (probably) expect to be announced at the Moscone Center on Wednesday. That’s just what this article aims to do so sit back, relax, and read all about what we expect Google to announce this week!

Google Nexus 7 Tablet Made By ASUS

This is easily the most rumored topic of the show and rumors and reports about it have given us a pretty clear picture of what we hope to see. First off it’ll be manufactured by ASUS and will have a 7-inch IPS display that will most likely have a resolution of the 1280×800 variety, then it will shoot for a price tag starting at around$200 and will come with 8GB or 16GB of storage, Google Wallet and NFC are said to be on board, and the whole thing will be powered by a quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor paired with 1GB RAM and a 12-core GeForce GPU. On the software front, it’s said to run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean which brings me right to the next thing in the list.

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

Rumors have been more scarce on what this latest piece of software will include but it’s said to be a more minor update compared to Ice Cream Sandwich. This would make perfect sense considering that it’s going to the 4.1 moniker instead of a full-blown 5.0 update. One of the things that we recently saw leak was a listing in the Google Play Store for the Galaxy Nexus to be the first phone to run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. This would make perfect sense for the Nexus 7 to debut Jelly Bean on a tablet and then have the Galaxy Nexus be the first phone to run it. That would allow Google to introduce just one new piece of hardware to run their software and have their current flagship phone be the first to get updated to Android 4.1.

A few of the features said to come with this latest update are Google Chrome shedding it’s beta skin and becoming the new stock browser, a revamped Google search bar, and some of the new features that were apparently skipped over in Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. No major UI overhauls are expected with this update. Maybe just a little tweaking to things.

Google Assistant

Android has had voice recognition and very simple voice commands for a while now but Google has yet to show a true competitor to Siri for it’s Android platform. This could all change at Google I/O as Google is said to be preparing to announce their latest work, Google Assistant which has reportedly been codenamed Project Majel. We’re not yet sure whether this feature will be baked right into Google’s latest dessert offering or whether it will be a standalone app that will be available for all Android phones but we’ll let you know as soon as any information comes out on that.

A Better Look At Android And Project Glass Integration

Okay, so this one’s a bit of a long shot but a guy can hope, can’t he? I’m really hoping that Andy Rubin is going to walk out on stage wearing a Project Glass prototype and show off some more of the Android integration with the futuristic glasses. Something like showing off Gmail notifications coming in and the user responding to text messages with voice would just be something that would get the tech world even more excited for this product. And no, Google, I don’t want to see a video presentation. I want the real thing, live on stage.

Other Random Things

There’s a whole host of things that Google could show off but some more minor but still notable ones are: pinch-to-zoom in the Gmail app. Honestly, I’m saddened to say that this is still missing from one of the core features of Android which is it’s Gmail integration. Get it together, Google. This is a feature that should have been there since the beginning. Google Wallet 2.0, this is one that could be quite interesting to see as it very well could be Google’s last chance to try to get widespread adoption of their NFC payment system. If Google can pack some nice features then it may be enough to turn carrier’s heads and get them to allow the program. And finally, Android and Chrome OS integration. This is one that I feel could be awesome if Google plays it’s cards right. Imagine the push that they could have towards cloud storage and syncing with this. They could really show the world how practical the cloud can be for an operating system.

Of course, none of these things are set in stone until El Goog announces them but they’re things that definitely could happen. Do you have anything special that I haven’t mentioned that you’d like to see announced? Share your ideas in the comments below!

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