Google I/O 2016 To Showcase Project Tango and Other Innovations
Among the apps and other innovations Google expects to highlight during its I/O 2016 developer conference in Mountain View, Calif., this week is Project Tango, its technology for bringing "a new kind of spatial perception" to the Android device platform.
Google is planning "a big expansion" of the project it first unveiled in 2014, according to a report by Bloomberg last week. Much like Google Maps enables users to visualize streets, buildings and cities around the world, Project Tango aims to create three-dimensional maps of the insides of buildings.
"Ever dreamed your app could let users play dominos without having to pick up the pieces, or redesign a kitchen without heavy lifting?" Google asked in its description of the Project Tango Developer Panel scheduled for Thursday at I/O. "Project Tango is a set of spatial sensors that allows your device to see the world like you do, giving you a new, interactive way to play games, reimagine spaces, and more." I/O 2016 is set to run Wednesday through Friday at the Shoreline Amphitheatre.
Google believes Tango (pictured) will enable developers to create a wide variety of apps for gaming, virtual reality and other experiences, the Bloomberg report stated. For example, museums could use the technology to supplement real-world exhibits with augmented-reality 3D animations.
Android Security, Games, AI and More
During Thursday's panel presentation on Tango, Google plans to feature developers from a number of companies that are creating new experiences using the platform. Those companies include Autodesk, Funomena, Lowe's and Schell Games.
The I/O conference will kick off with a morning keynote address by CEO Sundar Pichai, who plans to talk about "product and platform innovation at Google."
Other Android developments and apps will also be the focus of attention during I/O. A Wednesday session on Android Pay, for example, promises to reveal "exciting new announcements we have in the works." A program on Thursday will look at security updates being made to Android Marshmallow and its successor, Android N (widely believed to be Android Nutella), which could be released sometime this summer.
I/O will also feature sessions on Google game development, the backend-as-a-service Firebase, app development for cars, Google Places, Google Cloud and the latest advances in machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Experimenting with 'Spaces'
In addition to daily presentations, I/O will also feature a developer sandbox, codelabs, app reviews, one-on-one "office hour" meetings with Google experts and after-hours activities. Office-hour experts will focus on a variety of different topics, from AdWords, Android Pay and accessibility to Google Maps, search, YouTube and Nest, the home automation company acquired by Google in 2014.
Developers who won't be attending the main event will be able to participate in a variety of extended I/O activities taking place at various locations around the world. Hosted by local developer communities, these activities will include demos, live-streaming sessions, codelabs and hackathons.
Google also just announced that I/O attendees will be able to experiment with a new app called Spaces, which came out today for Android, iOS, desktop and mobile Web devices with Gmail accounts. The app, which has Google search, Chrome and YouTube built in, is aimed at enabling users to have better group sharing experiences.
"When someone shares something new to a space, the conversational view lets you see what the group is talking about without missing a beat," product director Luke Wroblewski wrote in a post on the Google blog. "You can create a space with just one tap for any topic and invite anyone via messaging, e-mail, a social network, or whatever way you like."
Image Credits: Screenshots via Google Project Tango.