Google poised to roll out arsenal of services, gadgets

18 May, 2017, 00:05 | Author: Archie Newman
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So what does Pichai and the company at large have to share with consumers?

Pichai started off by dishing out statistics for some of its more popular services. So there is a possibility that Google announces some major updates and extends support to some other devices. There's no immediate word on when the feature will be launching though.

However, it'll be tough to follow up on last year's I/O, where Google unveiled the Google Assistant virtual assistant based on artificial intelligence, the Daydream virtual reality (VR) platform, the Home smart assistant and speaker as well as messaging apps called Allo and Duo. For one, it can recognise flowers.

AI projects being worked on by the company include teaching neural networks to create better neural networks, better medical diagnoses, DNA sequencing and more. Google promises that soon, its camera app will be able to magically remove obstructions from a photo, putting what matters most front and center.

At Google I/O 2017, the company is likely to announce an iOS version of Google Assistant. Here's hoping we see Assistant-enabled hardware in South Africa...

From heating up water to turning on the ice maker to preheating the oven for turkey (that really is a command), Google Assistant can do it all.

It wouldn't be wholly unsurprising if Google Assistant didn't just move to cars too - there's a talk entitled "plug into the Google Assistant services ecosystem" which has potential.

Another notable bit of news was Assistant's growing ability to take visual context into account. It was only a matter of time, but I was pleased to hear that the Google Assistant would be coming to the iPhone. The Android for the auto also integrates Google Assistant, which is the artificial intelligence-powered, voice-based virtual assistant. Sounds tiresome, but it means you'll get new OS updates sooner, which is a Very Good Thing Indeed. If you ask what time the game is on or when your next meeting is, it'll tell you. Google Home will also be getting hands-free calling, making it the ultimate speakerphone, plus entertainment upgrades including access to Spotify, Deezer, and Soundcloud soon.

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Aside from granite countertops, it's a compelling reason to upgrade your kitchen, although older Whirlpool connected appliances from 2015 onward will also be upgraded with the new Google Home functionality.

The announcement included new hardware (that you can only use by tapping Google's cloud services), the second generation of what Google's dubbed its Tensor Processing Unit, a souped-up GPU that delivers up to 180 teraflops of floating-point performance.

Google said it is launching Google For Jobs, an effort that aims to pull in contextual data from multiple products, use machine learning and connect the labor pool to employers across various skill levels.

It's far from glam, but keeping things simple is the intention with Google Cardboard, which can provide a low-priced prototyping system for those seeking to develop VR tools.

For starters, Google Photos will receive Suggested Sharing functionality.

Here's a run down of the funky stuff we're hoping to see announced at Google I/O 2017.

One potentially unsettling new feature in Photos will let you automatically share some or all of your photos with other people. It was founded in 1996 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in a garage owned by Susan Wojcicki, now CEO of You Tube - a Google property. However, the same report claims that it will only be available in the United States at launch.

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