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June has already been an exciting month for tech so far with the unveiling of iOS 8 and the launch of Amazon’s first smartphone. And now it’s Google’s turn to make big waves in the tech world with its big Google I/O conference that’s set to start on Wednesday. This year’s I/O promises to be exceptionally busy, as Google’s world-conquering ambitions are going to extend from your smartphone and tablet into your clothes and your home. Below we’ve listed the three things we’re most looking forward to seeing at Google’s huge annual conference this week.
- Android 4.5/5.0 Lollipop/Lemonhead. We don’t yet know what the next major release of Android will be called but we do know that Google is going to unveil it at I/O this week. Among other things we can expect to see the next version of Android incorporate support for 64-bit hardware while also showcasing a major design overhaul that will feature flatter icons. Apple really got its mobile developer community fired up with iOS 8 earlier this month and we can’t wait to see what tricks Google has up its sleeves for the newest version of Android.
- The first smartwatches based on Android Wear. While the world is still breathlessly waiting for Apple to release its iWatch this fall, Google’s OEM partners are reportedly getting ready to launch three, count ‘em three, different smartwatches that run on Android Wear. Although the early smartwatch releases so far haven’t been smash hits, we’re curious to see how Motorola, LG and Samsung all try to build hardware that will fit around Google’s platform for wearable computers.
- What Nest can do now that it’s Google property. With news of Nest’s Developer Program breaking on Tuesday, we feel pretty confident that Google is going to show off its smart thermostats in some way this week. We already know that Nest wants its devices to work seamlessly with your dishwasher, your lighting system and your car and it’ll be great to see what other creative ways for Nest to act as the hub to our connected homes.
And just because there is so much potentially going on at Google I/O this week here are two bonus items:
- The gadget we most want to see unveiled: HTC’s Nexus 9 tablet. Pictures for this device leaked on Monday and it looks like the high-quality Nexus tablet that we’ve been waiting for. Given HTC’s talent for making killer hardware, this is definitely a tablet to watch.
- The gadget we least want to see unveiled: The Chromebook Pixel 2. We have nothing against Chromebooks but if you’re going to spend $1,300 on a laptop then it should be much more than a glorified browser.
What are the rest of you looking forward to?