On the night before Google I/O 2011, I posted an open call for any questions you might have had for Google core developers. And you delivered - within a few hours, we had over 50 questions of varying complexities, and I realized I was in trouble. Office hours are meant for developers asking dev questions, whereas most of the ones you've asked were about policies and availability. Still, I proceeded to ask away at office hours and at the end of each session, fearing being shunned forever. Unsurprisingly, some devs would force me to move on after realizing the volume of questions, but some persistently tried answering, referring me to the right people along the way if they didn't know something.
Beginning and experienced developers will appreciate the latest altruistic move by the core Android team member Roman Nurik who, now that the Google I/O conference is over, revealed the full sources for the I/O 2011 Android app for everyone to see.
If you haven't used the app yet, I am here to tell you that it's an Android masterpiece, in both UI/UX (user interface/usability) and coding paradigms. The app utilizes the new Fragments API heavily, so the source should provide plenty of implementation guidelines for those just picking it up. Thanks to the said Fragments, it runs great on both Honeycomb tablets and phones, making its code the perfect example of a relatively complex Android app done very-very right.
Well, we all saw it coming. After giving away phones the past two years (HTC Magic G2 in 2009, HTC Nexus One/Motorola Droid and HTC EVO 4G in 2010), Google I/O attendees will be leaving with shiny new Limited-Edition Samsung Galaxy Tabs. Here's our little (big) guy:
The Tab 10.1 will be available to the masses on June 8, but I/O attendees will be receiving it first. The Tab 10.1 of course will be running Honeycomb (and will be getting the upgrade to 3.1 in a few weeks), have a 10.1'' screen, 1Ghz dual-core processor, and sport 32GB of onboard memory.
Conferences like Google I/O give companies a chance to update curious parties will all their major goings-on, but also allows them to flaunt their stats a little bit. Android's success is noted by just about everyone these days, and Google's decided to keep on proving it by providing its latest activation and app figures.
Main statistics being discussed were:
- Android activations swelling to over 100 million worldwide (112 countries) on 215 carriers and 36 manufacturers
- 310 different Android devices
- 400,000 activations per day, compared to 100,000/day in May of 2010, 200,000/day in August and 300,000/day in December.
- 200,000 Android applications are now available in the marketplace
Pretty impressive numbers from the little OS that could.
Google has announced during its keynote presentation Tuesday morning that it will be bringing movie rentals to the Android Marketplace. Starting at $1.99, these titles will be featured just like apps.
The presenter also demonstrated a "pinning" function, which allows movies to be stored for offline use. This prevents you from losing access to your movie when your network is unavailable, or wish to save your data connection from a heavy workout.
Google also emphasized a "seamless" experience, going from tablet to phone and back again. as a recent Atrix owner who's looking to get some use out of his HDMI cable, Android Movies might be the kick in the right direction.
At Google's I/O Keynote Tuesday, it was announced that Android may be worming its way into your house in the near future - not just through your phone, tablet or TV, but through other appliances, as well. Android@Home is a system meant to be used as a conduit between your devices and appliances win your home, like the lighting or music systems.
As it was demonstrated for the keynote audience, the presenters had linked various lights to an application in the tablet, dimming them or turning them off as they performed different actions. These light bulbs were specially-made for the task; it looks like if you want access to the system, you're going to have to do some replacing in your home.
The Google I/O rumor mill has been surprisingly calm this year - certainly calmer than it was last year, that's for sure. But a recent tweet from @MAFiA303, who reportedly "works with Samsung," changes that completely - have a look for yourself:
Frankly, we were expecting to see more than a new iteration of Gingerbread at I/O, but hey - we'll take what we can get, and video chat is a seriously hot addition to mobile Gmail (especially given that "impressive quality" statement). And this is Google we're talking about, so expect a curveball - who can wait to see what surprises Andy and co.