We at Ausdroid have been quite busy this week, jetting around the country to attend various commitments, but one place we didn’t make it was Google IO 2011.
As is usually the case with Google IO, a lot of Android news came about, and we’ve not (yet) had the time to cover it all. However, we’re now proud to present our wrap of the Google IO 2011 event, and all the big announcements.
Hit us up after the break for the lowdown.
Every attendee received a Galaxy Tab 10.1s, some portable Wi-Fi gear, some Sony Xperia Plays, and heaps more. It’s a shame that we, and more Australians, weren’t able to attend – this is some pretty sweet kit.
New version of Android announced, and released
Android Honeycomb was updated to version 3.1, and it added support for a heap of cool new things, such as native resizable widgets, USB host support, inline HTML5 playback (videos, people) and a heap more.
To me, the coolest of these announcements is USB host support – this means you can plug external peripherals into your Honeycomb 3.1 powered devices – like keyboards, gaming controllers, cameras or perhaps even external storage. All leading to the point where a Honeycomb 3.1 powered tablet can be used truly independently from – and almost as a replacement of – a standalone computer.
The Motorola Xoom will be the first device to receive the update, and should be receiving it, or have already received it, by now.
The next version of Android officially named Ice-Cream Sandwich
In keeping with Google’s naming convention for Android – dessert items – the next version of Android will be known as Ice Cream Sandwich, and will converge the latest features from Gingerbread and Honeycomb into a unified OS for tablets and phones. We don’t know an awful lot about killer features for ICS yet, except that the holographic UI from Honeycomb will likely come across, and there will be more advanced application frameworks to allow developers to create more unique applications for the platform.
Google Music and movie rentals announced
However, in disappointing news, they won’t initially be available to users in Australia. There have been a couple of posts around the web indicating that the Music service isn’t all that – at least, not yet – but it shows promise. As with most things, rocky beginnings can lead to very good outcomes, and no doubt Google Music will fall into this category.
Google Music can (in beta) sync music wirelessly from the cloud, and can import all your music from places including your iTunes library (only those songs not protected by DRM, however), and can even import playlists (depending on the source of your data, Google Music may or may not recognise these).