The keynote presentations at this year’s Google I/O emphasized the momentum and vision for two of Google most important developer platforms: Android and Chrome.
On Android, Hugo Barra, director of Android Product Management, opened Day 1 of the conference with the themes of “Momentum, Mobile and More,” announcing Movies in Android Market, Music Beta by Google, Android @ Home, Android Open Accessory and a preview of the new Ice Cream Sandwich logo.
The next version of Android called Ice Cream Sandwich will unify tablets, phones, and Google TV devices under a single version of the operating system. Physical computing and interactive environments are one of the main topics opening the conference which witness nearly 1 million developers who joined at Moscone Center, attended I/O Extended events and watched online via I/O Live from 161 countries around the world. At the Android Keynote, a new facet to Android was introduced: Android for embedded devices and home automation.
At a press conference Tuesday morning, Android founder Andy Rubin summed up the operating system’s progress saying: Android started with phones, and then grew to tablets, and now it should grow to everything. “The Android circle is getting bigger,” Rubin commented. “Everything should be Androidified is that the word”
Now, Android is moving beyond phones and tablets, it’s moving into all devices and home automation with Android Open Accessory. An initiative called Android@Home, which allows Android apps to discover connect and communicate with appliances and devices in our homes, was unveiled. The Android Open Accessory Development Kit (ADK) includes an Android USB accessory based on the Arduino prototyping platform and an Android application that interacts with it was unveiled. The Android Open Accessory Kit is going to allow Android related devices receive data from different sensors via USB. Developers can now build new and exciting hardware controlled by Android.
Many examples of project possibilities were demonstrated with ADK at this year’s Google I/O. Examples of little robots controlled by an Android device, in-home automation with the new Android@Home initiative, where lighting, power control, and appliances interact with applications running on Android were all demonstrated. Motorola Xoom tablet was used to control a giant wooden maze by the tilting action of a Motorola Xoom tablet.
This is a new development for industrial automation and embedded system industry as new face of competition is setting up for embedded software being dominated by windows CE for a decade plus. Wind of change is blowing!