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June 6, 2016

Our Google I/O 2016 highlights

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Google I/O has come and gone, leaving a mountain of session videos in its wake. At the time of writing, 178 videos from I/O 16 have been released, and with so much content available it can be difficult to decide what to watch. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of highlights containing the key announcements and talks from this year’s I/O conference.

Android

Unsurprisingly, there are a lot of sessions on Google’s Android platform, so we’ve chosen the “What’s New in Android” talk to start off this list. Hosted by Chet Haase, Romain Guy, and Dan Sandler, this is a great starting point which summarises the changes coming for developers in Android N, and points you to other sessions on specific topics, ranging from design to performance.

Android Wear

This year, Google announced the next generation of their wearable OS, Android Wear 2.0. One of the standout features of Wear 2.0 is allowing apps to run without requiring a phone, making the operating system much more attractive on the iOS platform, which previously had fairly limited interaction with the Android-based platform. The “Making Watch Apps more Standalone” session goes into the four big changes that this entails for the platform, and how developers can leverage them to improve their apps.

Google Developer Certifications

One of Coderus’ core values is continued learning, and as such we were delighted to see Google continue their push into education with the announcement of Google Developer Certifications. This session covers the approach that Google is taking to certifications and how they can benefit individuals, as well as organisations.

Firebase

A topic which got some focus in the keynote was the newly revamped and expanded Firebase. The backend platform added some new services and even absorbed previously Google-branded tools, such as Google Cloud Messaging, bringing them into a single unified package. The “Firebase Overview” gives you a great look at these new features and how to get the most out of them.

Virtual Reality

Last but not least, a big highlight for this event was Virtual Reality (VR). VR is an area that gets everybody excited, and at I/O 16 Google unveiled Daydream, their plan to bring high-quality VR to Android. Rather than a specific headset, Google is creating a standard for phones and headsets that other manufacturers can produce. Such devices will be called “Daydream Ready” and are expected to start shipping in Autumn. The “VR at Google” session goes into the details of Google’s approach, the problems they faced and how they solved them.

This concludes our highlights from this year’s Google I/O developer conference. You can watch the full Google I/O 2016 playlist here.


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