Google’s big i/o developers conference kicks off Wednesday morning with the first of two keynotes that’ll set the tone for the company’s products over the next year.While the conference mostly focuses on sessions for developers, the press is here to get a glimpse at the future of Android, Google+, Chrome, and a bunch of other Google products.
So what can we expect?
Here’s a quick rundown of what we’ve heard Google will likely announce this year:
A new Google-branded tablet. This will be Google’s first “Nexus” tablet, which it developed in partnership with Asus. It’s rumoured to be a 7-inch tablet and cost $199 for the 8 GB model. The 16 GB model will cost $249. We heard that Google may also offer magazine subscriptions on the Nexus tablet via the Google Play store.
The next version of Android. Google may also provide details on Jelly Bean, the next version of Android. Early leaks suggest Jelly Bean will be labelled version 4.1, so it’s likely a minor upgrade from the current version, 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It’s also possible the Nexus Tablet will be the first device to run Jelly Bean.
A new home entertainment product. The WSJ reported a few months ago that Google was working on a device that will let you stream your music throughout your home. It’ll likely be very similar to Sonos, the popular sound system that lets you play music files over your home network. There’s a good chance Google will announce its product at i/o and tie it into its Google Music product.
Other Google services: We expect to hear a few updates from the teams working on Google+, Google Drive, and Chrome. Most importantly, we’re interested to see if Google opens up its API to developers. (Wouldn’t it be nice to share your Instagram photos, tweets, and Foursquare checkins on Google+?)
The fun starts at 9:30 a.m. Pacific, 12:30 p.m. Eastern on Wednesday. There’ll be another keynote on Thursday at 10 a.m. Pacific, 1 p.m. Eastern. Check back here for our live coverage.