What's expected at Google I/O conference

23 June 2014, 6:08 pm EDT By Quinten Plummer Tech Times
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The Android and Chrome faithful prepare to descend upon San Francisco for Google I/O 2014 on June 25-26. As usual, rumors of new hardware and software abound.  ( Robert Scooble | Creative Commons Creative )

The highly anticipated Google I/O 2014 kicks off Wednesday, June 25, as developers and consumers get a chance to hear from Google and learn what hardware and software innovations it plans to push over the next year and well into the future.

Few know exactly what's coming, the limited group that has more than one puzzle piece of Google's yet-to-be revealed vision for the next year. But like any multinational corporation, it's hard to conduct business without telegraphing a few of your plans.

So what might Google reveal during I/O 2014?

Wearable Tech

"Glass Explorers," a name for early adopters of Google Glass, are likely to receive a lot of promising news about Google's wearable tech and the company's initiatives to push the tech into the mainstream.

Google has enlisted eight of its researchers, engineers and designers to push the promise of Google Glass and other wearable tech. The heavy push of wearable tech has been most recently witnessed with the June unveiling of the first five companies included in Google at Work, the company's initiative to spark enterprise development for Google Glass.

Google Cloud Platform

Well-established in the realm of the clouds, Google is still expected to deliver a refined vision of strategies for cloud computing. There's hope for the reveal of new, streamlined cloud services, but the company looks ready to promote existing elements of its cloud platform -- there's a Day One lecture entitled "Big Data, the Cloud way: Accelerated and simplified," which alludes to this point.

Ray Kurzweil, director of engineering at Google, has been slated to give a lecture entitled "Biologically inspired models of intelligence." Kurzweil was said to be preparing to present his short- and long-term plans for bolstering user interaction with artificial intelligence, helping to improve areas including searches and machine responses.

Home Automation

With the recent acquisition of Nest, in February 2014, and Nest's June 2014 acquisition of Dropcam, home automation will likely receive a lot of attention at Google I/O 2014. Dropcam produces a line of cloud-controlled cameras used for home monitoring, while Nest offers programmable thermostats and smart smoke detectors.

It likely too early to hear solid plans about Dropcam's future under Google's wing, but expect at least a slice of that vision to be revealed. Meanwhile, Nest could announce new products or features to complement its current offerings -- Matt Rogers, founder and VP of engineering for Nest Labs, has been slated to deliver a presentation on Nest.

Google Auto Link

Rumors have also been swirling surounding the impending announcement of Google Auto Link, which was said to enable users to "project" a user interface inside their vehicles. It is expected to offer a way for drivers to interact with and control their Android smartphones using the car's own screen and controls. There's little word on how the system was expected to be implemented, but it was expected to bring competition to Apple's CarPlay.


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