Google I/O Opening Keynote Live-Blog (10am PT)

01:23PM EDT – John Legend’s voice is coming to the assistant – Wavenet allows to capture his voice and to synthesize it. Coming later this year.

01:23PM EDT – New video demonstrating Google Assistant scenarios.

01:24PM EDT – Scott Huffman taking the stage.

01:25PM EDT – Two years ago the Assistant was announced at IO – today it’s available on 500M devices.

01:25PM EDT – It’s available in over 40 auto brand and 5000 Assitant enabled devices.

01:25PM EDT – Last year it was launched in India and has gained a 3x uptake in adoption.

01:26PM EDT – We’re now covering new enhancements to the Assitant.

01:26PM EDT – Natural conversation is an important aspect.

01:27PM EDT – There’s no longer a need to say “Hey Google” everytime to enable it – it will naturally follow the conversation.

01:27PM EDT – The Assistant now understands when you are talking to it and when you’re talking to somebody else.

01:28PM EDT – The feature is called Continued Conversation and will be rolling out in the coming future.

01:29PM EDT – “Multiple Actions” follows the conversation and stiches together several requests- it’s very hard to parse sentences like these.

01:31PM EDT – “Pretty please” is a feature to make GA require to be polite for requests.

01:32PM EDT – Visually assistive features now coming into focus.

01:32PM EDT – We’re looking at the first demo – a Lenovo smart display.

01:33PM EDT – The device is controlled by voice but because it has a screen it’s a much more rich assistant.

01:33PM EDT – YouTube & YouTube TV will be added onto Smart Displays.

01:34PM EDT – There’s many more of ways that SmartDisplays can make home actions easier.

01:35PM EDT – Inspired by the smart display experiences, this translated into improvements on phone based Assistant.

01:35PM EDT – The assistant takes full advantage of the screen for content response.

01:36PM EDT – Demonstration of food pickup & delivery experience. I’m wondering how far this will actually be adopted outside of small areas.

01:37PM EDT – The new visual assitant will be launched on Android later in the summer and iOS later in the year.

01:38PM EDT – Google Assitant will be integrated into Google Maps this summer.

01:38PM EDT – Sundar taking back the stage.

01:38PM EDT – The mission of Assistant is to help you to get things done.

01:38PM EDT – Making calls is a core aspect of this.

01:39PM EDT – Connecting users to businesses is also a core aspect of this – AI can help with this with connecting you with businesses who do not have an online presence.

01:40PM EDT – For example making an appointment through Assitant to a hair dresser – the Assistant will actually call the business to make a real appointment.

01:41PM EDT – This is very amazing as it demonstrates a full fledged voice “AI” that’s able to have conversations.

01:42PM EDT – Another demo demonstrating a restaurant reservation which doesn’t go as one would think- the assistant still managed to navigate through the conversation succesfully.

01:43PM EDT – The feature will be rolling out as an experiment in the comings weeks.

01:44PM EDT – Giving users back time is a core goal for Google.

01:44PM EDT – “Digital well-being” is being addressed now.

01:44PM EDT – People are anxious about missing information – “FOMO” Fear of missing out.

01:45PM EDT – JOMO – Joy of missing out.

01:45PM EDT – Google understands your habits and focuses on the content which you are interested in.

01:46PM EDT – I wonder if this creates an echo-chamber in terms of information….

01:46PM EDT – Family Link enables managing kids’ screen time.

01:47PM EDT – This is part of the Digital Wellbeing site rolling out soon.

01:47PM EDT – Sundar is addressing the issue of journalism – fake news being brought up?

01:48PM EDT – “Support quality journalism” – We agree!

01:48PM EDT – Google News initiative invests $300M over the next 3 years to collaborate with news outlets to improve the quality of news.

01:48PM EDT – Google has a responsibility to provide news.

01:49PM EDT – AI has been used to improve the relevancy and quality of the news sources.

01:49PM EDT – The new Google News – Trystan Upstill taking the stage to explain more.

01:49PM EDT – With the new GN – 3 things are the key aspects that are improved.

01:50PM EDT – As soon as you open GN – the top five stories are always the stories that you care most about.

01:50PM EDT – Google pulls from various sources, for example it also pulls from local news outlets as it knows your location.

01:51PM EDT – The headlines category contains the large worldwide stories.

01:52PM EDT – The new GN app is builed with the new Material Theme.

01:52PM EDT – There’s a new visual format called Newscasts.

01:52PM EDT – It uses natural language processing to bring news content on a topic together in a visually expressive presentation.

01:53PM EDT – Understanding the full story- it’s a lot of effort to bring together a lot of sources and to sum it up in its fullest.

01:54PM EDT – Google organizes news stories based on their “temporal co-locality”.

01:55PM EDT – It uses its real-time event analysis to create a timeline of an story and its events.

01:56PM EDT – Full coverage is not filtered based on the user’s habits, but rather something that will be identical to all users universally.

01:57PM EDT – Newsstand allows you to subscribe with Google to paid publications.

01:57PM EDT – Google build this with over 60 publishers around the world and will be rolled out in the coming weeks.

01:57PM EDT – It’s an interesting take on aggregating paid content.

01:58PM EDT – It will be rolled out on Android, iOS in 127 starting today.

01:58PM EDT – We’re focusing towards Android now.

01:59PM EDT – Introduction video showcasing Android’s strengths over the years.

01:59PM EDT – Android’s “openness” is a key aspect that Google’s focusing on here.

02:00PM EDT – Dave Burke taking the stage.

02:00PM EDT – 10 years of Android – The T-Mobile G1 was the first phone with Android.

02:01PM EDT – Partners have launched tens of thoustands of phones being used by billions of people.

02:01PM EDT – The growth of Android has helped to fuel the shift from desktop towards mobile.

02:01PM EDT – Android P.

02:01PM EDT – P is an important step towards vision and AI in the mobile space.

02:02PM EDT – On-device machine learning can enable a lot of feature about the OS learning your habits.

02:02PM EDT – Battery life is a key aspect. “Adaptive Battery” is designed to give a more consistent machine learning experience.

02:03PM EDT – It will analyse which apps you will use and depending on the usage patterns it will only enable app wakeups for those relevant apps.

02:03PM EDT – This results into a 30% less wakeups on average.

02:03PM EDT – Moving into screen brightness – most smartphones adapt brightness based on the environmental lightning.

02:04PM EDT – P introduces adaptive brightness which learns how you like to adjust the brightness and adjusts it based on your habits by itself.

02:05PM EDT – Google Launcher – which introduced predictive apps which introduced the predicted apps you’d like to use.

02:05PM EDT – P now introduces predictive actions which does something similar but applies to actions within apps.

02:05PM EDT – This requires developers to introduce these actions onto the app.

02:06PM EDT – This provides deep links into the apps from the launcher.

02:06PM EDT – “Slices” are interactive snippets of app UIs.

02:07PM EDT – Early access for app actions and slices begin next month into the developer previews for P.

02:08PM EDT – Google introduces “ML Kit” which is a new set of APIs for machine learning.

02:08PM EDT – This enables both on-device ML as well as Google’s cloud based services.

02:08PM EDT – It’s based on TensorFlow Lite and uses the NN API – but it will be also available on iOS.

02:09PM EDT – One of the key goals over the last few years it to simplify the UI of Android for expand it to more users.

02:09PM EDT – Google is demonstrating new feature’s on Dave’s phone.

02:10PM EDT – The demonstration here is about the transition from the navigation bar towards a simplified home button with contextual actions and gestures.

02:11PM EDT – This is similar to the navigation of the iPhone X’s bar – at least Google’s take on it.

02:11PM EDT – The new navigation system is said to be a lot faster.

02:12PM EDT – The volume slider now changes the media volume by default now in P. Seems to be another feature that Samsung had first introduced on Android O.

02:13PM EDT – Sameer Samat taking the stage to demonstrate “Digital Wellbeing”

02:14PM EDT – “Helping people with their digital wellbeing is more important to us than ever”

02:15PM EDT – Android P will show a dashboard based on the amount of time you spent on applications and a usage history thereof.

02:16PM EDT – YouTube will be showing total watchtime across mobile and desktop.

02:17PM EDT – P will introduce time limits on apps – it will give you a notification and grey out the app after you exceed the limit. The goal here is to limit your usage.

02:18PM EDT – “Shush” will disable all notifications on the phone when you turn the screen downwards. It will still enable notifications and calls from important poeple.

02:19PM EDT – “Wind down” mode puts the phone into silent mode and greys out the screen after a set time to enable you to help you to go to bed.

02:19PM EDT – The Android P beta is announced today and will be available on the latest Google Pixels.

02:20PM EDT – Alongside the Pixels there’s 7 OEMs that will provide beta firmware builds.

02:21PM EDT – Oneplus, Nokia, Vivo, Sony, Xiaomi, Oppo and Essential are part of the beta program.

02:21PM EDT – Jen Fitzpatrick taking the stage to cover computer vision.

02:21PM EDT – Google Maps has covered over 220 countries.

02:22PM EDT – Advancements in AI now will be able to automatically add new streets and buildings.

02:24PM EDT – A new updated Google Maps will show content and events in your area.

02:24PM EDT – This new tab in maps is called “For you”, with new places to visit and personal recommendations such as trending restaurants.

02:24PM EDT – It encourages visiting new places.

02:25PM EDT – The locations are scored based on a system “Your match” based on your history and why it recommends it for you.

02:26PM EDT – Group matching is a feature to organize events with your friends. You can share a shortlist of places, and your friends will vote on locations.

02:29PM EDT – Google now explaining location determination based on the phone’s camera.

02:30PM EDT – This is an AR type feature which uses the camera to analyse the location and correlate that with the location on the map.

02:30PM EDT – It will overlay interesting information such as business locations over the camera viewfinder.

02:30PM EDT – Basically this really is proper augmented reality for Google Maps.

02:32PM EDT – Google Lens is also introducing these capabilities – Starting next week Lens will be natively integrated into OEM camera applications. A list of vendors take part – Samsung seems to be notably missing here.

02:32PM EDT – Google Lens is also introducing these capabilities – Starting next week Lens will be natively integrated into OEM camera applications. A list of vendors take part – Samsung seems to be notably missing here.

02:33PM EDT – Lens allows OCR and copy and paste functionality.

02:33PM EDT – It will automatically looks up the text that you’re selecting and give you contextualized content.

02:33PM EDT – It will automatically looks up the text that you’re selecting and give you contextualized content.

02:35PM EDT – .

02:35PM EDT – Last thing: making lens work in real-time

02:36PM EDT – All the Lens features will be coming the next few weeks.

02:37PM EDT – CEO of Waymo (Alphabets’s self driving car business) John Krafcik

02:38PM EDT – Waymo is the only company in the world with a fleet of self-driving cars.

02:38PM EDT – Video demonstrating the experience in a trial in Phoenix, AZ;

02:40PM EDT – Phoenix will be first public program where it will enable people to call Waymo calls to get around.

02:41PM EDT – Waymo uses deep learning and machine learning for things such as pedestrian detection.

02:42PM EDT – This allowed for a 100x reduction in the error rate.

02:43PM EDT – Explaining “Perception” and “Prediction” AI uses in autonomous driving.

02:44PM EDT – Dimitri is explaining the use of ML on the combination of sensor data to enable high precision perception and classificaiton of objects.

02:45PM EDT – Waymo cars have driven 6 million miles and have gained a lot of data in terms of real scenarios.

02:46PM EDT – The neural networks are trained on the TPUs and Google’s datacenters.

02:46PM EDT – In simulation, Waymo has “driven” over 5B miles.

02:47PM EDT – Google’s demonstrating how ML allows for filtering sensor noise – such as snow picked up by the LIDAR system.

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