Google’s response to Apple’s WWDC kicks off today with the opening keynote address at the Google I/O conference and, like Apple, this time around Google gave a full preview of the next version of Android ahead of a fall release. Android “L” (we’re assuming a dessert name will be decided on later) introduces a completely new design language as well as major enhancements for battery life, a new Android Runtime to replace Dalvik, and integration with its Android Wear platform. We also got a look at its answer to CarPlay and Apple TV: Android Auto and an accompanying SDK for developers and a revamped ‘Android TV’ platform. Also new is the Android One program to help get devices into emerging markets and a Continuity like feature for Chromebooks and Android devices.
Google’s Sundar Pichai, who had some words about Tim Cook recently, also shared some numbers on Android that appeared to be in response to Cook’s comment at WWDC regarding Android switchers and the platform’s security. Google claimed it now has 1 billion 30-day active users and also shared that it’s now at 62% of the overall tablet market. That market is based on shipments, however, so to drive the point home Google gave us a number on usage: 42% of YouTube usage on tablets is Android. He also made reference to the fact that Android had many of the features that Apple just introduced– widgets, third-party keyboards– as far back as 2009.
Head below for a roundup of all the news from 9to5Google:
Google announces Android One program to create high quality, affordable smartphones in developing markets
Android “L” will include Factory Reset Protection (kill switch) and Universal Data Controls (privacy) to enhance security
“L” version of Android to drop Dalvik, introduce new Android Runtime with better performance, graphics
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