Feeds

I/O NOOOOO!!! We sat through Google's bum numbing 3-hour keynote so you didn't have to

Lick of paint for Android, car control and more

Security for virtualized datacentres

Google I/O Google has kicked off its annual developer conference with a three-hour keynote in which the search kingpin explained where it's taking Android next: namely, your wrist, your car, your living room, and beyond.

It was long enough to trouble your correspondent's laptop battery.

Sundar Pichai, Google's head of Android division, demoed the new build of the operating system – officially referred to as the L release but expected to be codenamed Lollipop – in front of 6,000 developers (and a couple of protestors) in San Francisco this morning. The developer preview released today includes more than 5,000 new APIs, including a new set of Gmail interfaces, we're told.

New user interface on Android

The most visible change in the new version of the operating system is what Googlers are calling Material Design. In practice it’s a revved up user interface with shadowing for icons to make them appear to hover over the page; brighter colors; 3D viewing support; and 60 FPS animations onscreen.

Youtube video of the keynote

Automatically unlock a phone in a known environment

The new build will also include new security settings that can remotely wipe stolen Android handsets, and Google also demoed an automatic unlock feature that's triggered when a handset detects a Wi-Fi network associated with the user, a recognized voice-print, or an authorized Bluetooth watch – such as the one worn by Google director of engineering Dave Burke.

Performance ramp

Android's performance is also being built up, with a new virtual machine called ART replacing Dalvik. ART will run processes on ARM, x86, and MIPS processors, and Google claimed it is twice as fast as its predecessor. Developers will not have to rewrite code to see the benefit.

Graphics are also being improved with the Android Extension Pack. Google has been working with graphics chipset companies to allocate specific memory for graphics, including tessellation, geometry shaders, and ASTC texture compression.

Google wants battery life to be improved and so has been working on Project Volta for Android in the new build. This aims to make functions more efficient with a battery-saving mode, and provides developers with a real-time map of how applications are using power at any given time so they can be optimized for more efficient running.

You'll be left Chrome alone

Chrome too is getting a makeover, with deeper integration with applications installed on handsets. Google showed off search results for restaurants that flagged up a review from OpenTable which could be clicked to launch the app automatically, and Google+ will be used to sign the user in.

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure
State attorney demands Apple CEO bows the knee to him
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Monitors monitor's monitoring finds touch screens have 0.4% market share
Not four. Point four. Count yer booty again, Microsoft
Getting to the BOTTOM of the great office seating debate
Belay that toil, me hearty, and park your scurvy backside
Hey, Mac fanbois. HGST wants you drooling over its HUGE desktop RACK
What vast digital media repository could possibly need 64 TERABYTES?
In a spin: Samsung accuses LG exec of washing machine SABOTAGE
Rival electronic giant tries to iron out allegations
Lumia rebrand begins: Nokia's new UK web home is Microsoft.com
Yarr, them Nokia logos walking the plank and into the drink
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.