Google creatively revealed the date and location of this year's I/O developer conference through an entertaining, albeit short-lived, online game.
Google also teased that Android P will be one of the major components of Google I/O 2018. However, a year after the launch of Android Oreo, are Android users really ready for another operating system upgrade?
Google I/O 2018 Online Game
The online game that revealed the date and location of this year's Google I/O started with a cryptic tweet from the Google Developers account.
— Google Developers (@googledevs) January 24, 2018
The image in the tweet is a binary code that stands for "google.com/io," and accessing the link leads to a Google Street View focused on the reception area of a Google Developers building.
There are hints scattered throughout the lobby, including the calendar set at Aug. 5, which is National Sister's Day, and book titled Sister Carrie on the coffee table. These clues are the start of an online game that mimic escape room puzzles, though users will not be breaking out of anywhere. We won't spoil the details beyond this stage, but for those who are stumped, 9to5Google compiled all the steps that you need to follow to complete the game.
Meanwhile, for those who would rather just find out what the game is all about, it is Google's way of unveiling that the I/O developer conference this year will run from May 8 to May 10. It will again be at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California, which is the same location of the conference for the past two years.
Android P Coming Too Soon?
Google's game may have also provided a hint about the name of Android P, as a pineapple upside-down cake was used as one of the clues. This may be an early reveal of the Android P name, but we will not know for sure until Google confirms.
In any case, Android P figures to be one of the major announcements of Google I/O 2018. However, the question is whether owners of Android smartphones are really ready to receive another upgrade after Android Oreo, which was unveiled at Google I/O 2017.
Both versions of Android Oreo, namely Android 8.0 and Android 8.1, have been installed in only 0.7 percent of Android devices, according to Google's own data. In fact, there are still some new smartphones that are being rolled out pre-installed with Android Nougat, Android Oreo's predecessor.
While developers look forward to what Android P has in store, Google might want to place a bigger focus on the Android fragmentation problem so that users will get to enjoy all the work that everyone is doing for the mobile operating system.