What to expect: Google I/O 2016

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What to expect: Google I/O 2016

Google I/O 2016 preview

Today is the day - in just a few hours (18:00 GMT) Google will kick off its annual I/O conference in California. Although the event is more angled towards developers, Google takes the opportunity to show off what the company has been working on over the past 12 months. This is what we think you should be looking out for...

Android N

We’ve already had a play with Android N, but tonight Google will begin to set its plans in stone, and tell us exactly what the new version of the software will be capable of.

Some of the most exciting new features include multi-window, which has been a long time coming to Google handsets. There’s a new look for the settings menu – pulled down from the top of the screen – and there’s finally a ‘clear all apps’ button, which stock Android has been crying out for.

Virtual reality

There are rumours all over the internet of Google planning a new virtual reality headset. Through the success of Cardboard, Google’s budget VR viewer, it’s become obvious that the Mountain View company can deliver on both the hardware and software sides of the fence. Now it’s time for something much less cardboard-ish.

We’re expecting something a little more in line with Samsung’s Gear VR - standby for updates.

The next Nexus

The Nexus smartphone range showcases Android in it purest form, letting Google collaborate with different manufacturers, following the Nexus 5X and 6P by LG and Huawei respectively.

We might see the unveiling of a new Nexus smartphone, and hopefully confirmation of which manufacturers Google will be working with this year. Huawei has been hotly tipped to make a return, and given how well the 6P went down last year, it wouldn’t be surprising.

Project Tango

Project Tango is Google’s codename for a technology that will let smartphones, tablets and VR headsets understand their position in the real world. This is thought to potentially lead to augmented reality possibilities, meaning you’d be able to move around using VR headsets without the need for surrounding sensors (think HTC Vive).

The live stream will be live at 18:00. Tune in here, and follow updates on social media using the hashtag #IO16:

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

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