Google I/O teaser: the future of Android and more

Sundar Pichai

Bloomberg Businessweek has published a feature-length profile with Sundar Pichai, head of the Android and Chrome divisions at Google. After a lengthy interview that details Pichai growing up in India, getting a scholarship at Stanford and eventually working at Google, the report drops some big news: the future of Android, Android Wear and Android TV will be unveiled this week, alongside other announcements… 

The future of Android

Pichai will announce the next version of the Android operating system at Google I/O, the search company’s annual two-day developers conference that kicks off in San Francisco tomorrow. The long-serving Google executive will also talk about Android Wear, its software for health and fitness trackers, including new manufacturing partners and devices, in a race against the oft-rumored iWatch.

Android TV is expected to round off a trio of important announcements at the keynote, which begins at 9:00 AM Pacific tomorrow. Google has attempted to venture into the living room in the past with Google TV, but it scrapped those efforts in 2010 after it didn’t go as well as planned. Google more recently followed up with the Chromecast, a $35 dongle that allows users to stream media over Wi-Fi or a local network.

Google Glass improvements

Glass Viewfinder

Google also announced this afternoon that it will be rolling out highly requested software enhancements to Google Glass, including a viewfinder for easily framing your photos and more Google Now cards. Additionally, Google Glass will now ship with 2 GB of RAM for better performance. There was no specific timeframe provided for when these features will be available.

Google+ Photos update

G+ Photos

The team behind Google+ Photos also announced some new features, including the ability to edit your previous edits of photos. “Suppose you want to re-crop a photo but leave the other effects alone,” Google+ Photos Project Manager John Nack writes. “Or keep your choice of frames, but turn up the brightness and contrast. Now you can, and you don’t have to start from scratch. Just open your photo in the Chrome editor, click on ‘Edits,’ and you’ll be able to adjust the edits you’ve already made.”

Google+ Photos also gains a new Auto Awesome Effects feature. “Now when you upload a land or cityscape photo, Effects can stylize your image to make the subject really pop,” adds Nack. “You can enjoy the new photo as is, or open the editor to make further adjustments.” Both updates are rolling out today, although the App Store does not yet reflect the updated version of Google+ for iPhone. Nack did not specify if these features are coming to mobile yet.

We’ll be providing coverage of Google I/O at 9:00 AM Pacific tomorrow.