Google I/O highlights: Nexus 7 tablet, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and more!

We're gathering all the biggest news from Google I/O 2012 here, including the Nexus 7 tablet, Nexus Q media streamer, Google Glass Explorer Edition, the latest from the Android team, and more!

Major Updates

  • Update
    30 about 2 years ago 478

    Android manufacturers mostly mum on Jelly Bean updates as Google tries to repair a broken system

    After any major OS update, the first question on everybody's mind is naturally "When can I get it?" As Android owners know all-too-well, the answer to that question inevitably involves waiting, rumors, innuendo, leaks, and often crushing disappointment. With the announcement of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean at Google I/O, there was the same hope there is for every Google I/O: that the situation would change. Sadly, it's not at all clear that it will — if the responses we've gotten from major Android...

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    Sugar crash
  • Update
    29 about 2 years ago 282

    Matias Duarte on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and the Nexus 7 (video)

    At Google I/O, we sat down with Android's head of user experience, Matias Duarte, to talk about Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, the Nexus 7, and the premiere Google Now feature. It was a casual conversation where Duarte gave us the skinny on Google's philosophy behind its new products this week. It's Friday, come chill out on the couch with Josh and Matias for 20 minutes of design, insight, and laughs.

    Google Now: It's information waiting for you.
  • Update
    28 about 2 years ago 15

    Watch this: Google's I/O 2012 day one keynote video now live

    Google's first keynote of I/O 2012 proved to be a big one earlier this week, introducing new software updates and hardware. The biggest news was the company's Nexus 7 tablet, a low-cost 7-inch Android Jelly Bean device that goes head-to-head with Amazon's Kindle Fire. Google also announced its Nexus Q device at the event, a cloud-based audio and video streaming appliance designed to pull media from Google's Play Store and YouTube.

    Asides from the hardware, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean got its...

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    Two hours of Google fun
  • Update
    27 about 2 years ago 1185

    Google Nexus 7 review

    Google’s Nexus 7 tablet is not exactly a surprise. Nor is the fact that I’m able to work on a review of the product just hours after the device was announced. For years now, Google has had the uncanny habit of not only making big announcements at its I/O events, but then immediately sharing what it has shown off with developers and members of the press.

    This year was over the top. Not only did Google hand out its new, 7-inch, $199 Nexus 7 tablet, but it also introduced a new version of...

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    Fast, cheap, and out of control
  • Update
    26 about 2 years ago 153

    Google's Vic Gundotra and Bradley Horowitz on the future of Google+ (video)

    Google wants to revolutionize real-world social life with its new Google+ features, including pre-event "Cinemagraphs" and "party mode," which lets users automatically share pictures taken during the get-together. But how does Google plan to build engagement with the network, and what does this mean for the rest of its web tools? We sat down with Google Senior VP of Engineering (and formerly of Social) Vic Gundotra and Product Management VP Bradley Horowitz to discuss where Google+ is going.

    "...

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    Our problem was not of engagement, or of users. Our problem was our products were different.
  • Update
    25 about 2 years ago 32

    Google announces Compute Engine

    Google has just announced what appears to be a competitor to Amazon's EC2 (Elastic Cloud Compute), called Google Compute Engine. While we don't (by any means) have full details of exactly what Google Compute Engine is capable of yet, Urs Hölzle, SVP of technical infrastructure at the company said on stage that the cloud service for business "gives you Linux virtual machines at Google scale," with "high performance networking between VMs, so you can form them into a cluster." Hölzle also says...

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  • Update
    24 about 2 years ago 40

    Google releases Google Drive for iOS and Chrome OS

    Google has just announced that Google Drive will be coming to iOS and Chrome OS, and it's available now in the App Store. At its day 2 keynote, Google demonstrated Google Drive on the iPad, showing off the real-time collaboration and image recognition capabilities. The company launched its Drive app for PC, Mac, and Android back in April, and said at the time that the iOS version was "98 percent done." You can grab Drive for iOS from the App Store right now, and be sure to check out our giant...

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    Real-time collaboration in iOS
  • Update
    23 about 2 years ago 409

    Google announces Chrome for iPhone and iPad, available today

    On stage at Google I/O, Brian Rakowski, Vice President of the Chrome division at Google has just announced Chrome for iPhone and iPad. It's something iOS users have been asking for for a very long time, and plenty of people will be happy about this news. The app will be for iOS 4.3 and higher devices, and will be available today. The app will also support Chrome sync, and looks like it's just as full-featured as the browser which many of us know and love.

    Update: Download Chrome for iOS...

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    Finally!
  • Update
    22 about 2 years ago 67

    Android 4.1 preview for Galaxy Nexus leaked, available for download

    A preview Jelly Bean ROM for the Galaxy Nexus has been leaked by RootzWiki. The release came just hours after Google pushed a Jelly Bean preview update over the air to I/O developers' Nexae. Rootz says that although the update Google released was solely for the GSM Galaxy Nexus, its build will work with Verizon's LTE version as well. Verizon users will have to stick to the company's 3G CDMA service if they want to try out the preview software — LTE won't work.

    From early feedback, there...

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    Jelly Bean Wallpapers and store available for the less adventurous
  • Update
    21 about 2 years ago 179

    Nexus 7 designed and manufactured in four months, sold at cost

    Asus' Chairman Jonney Shih and Google's head of Android Andy Rubin have revealed that the Nexus 7 is being sold at cost, and was built in just four months. "Our engineers told me it is like torture," Shih tells All Things D. Asus was told that the Nexus tablet was to be ready in four months, must be high-end, and should not cost over $200. "They ask a lot."

    Rubin says that only Asus could move that fast: "we went from zero to working product in four months." He admits to being frustrated at...

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    When it gets sold through the Play store, there's no margin.
  • Update
    20 about 2 years ago 41

    Android 4.1 OTA update available for manual download for a few Galaxy Nexus devices

    Google saw fit to distribute the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, Nexus 7, and the Nexus Q to all of the developers at today's Google I/O event, but the Galaxy Nexus wasn't running Android 4.1 out of the box. Instead, it was made available as an over-the-air update (ours just hit) — and with every OTA update comes a direct download. The ROM, which clocks in at 156MB, will technically only work with a certain variant of the Galaxy Nexus, the "Takju" US GSM version — and more specifically it may only work...

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    Get your hack on
  • Update
    19 about 2 years ago 51

    Google I/O attendees receiving special white edition Nexus 7 tablets

    Remaining true to Google I/O tradition, those attending this week's event will receive a collection of loot, including a Samsung Galaxy Nexus running Android 4.1 Jellybean, a Nexus Q, and a white version of the Asus Nexus 7, otherwise unavailable to the public. Unlike the model currently available for pre-order, which comes with a black textured backplate, developers and other attendees are receiving the Nexus 7 with a white finish on the rear panel. As far as we can tell, the device has no...

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    Attendance has its benefits
  • Update
    18 about 2 years ago 239

    Google Now: hands-on with Jelly Bean's Siri competitor

    We've spent some quality time with Google's new voice-enabled search and information system on Jelly Bean, Google Now. It's an interesting system that could be described as Google's take on Siri, but that's not entirely a fair description. Yes, Google Now allows you to perform searches by voice and provides a mix of pre-computed information along with web searches, but it goes further by offering persistent "cards" that automatically populate based on your searches.

    The auto-population is...

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    It's not Siri, but it's not far off
  • Update
    17 about 2 years ago 181

    Google's Project Glass: first impressions (with Sergey Brin's headset)

    I just had a bizarre and fairly interesting experience here at Google I/O 2012. After a small, closed press session on Google's Project Glass, company co-founder Sergey Brin decided to let the press here try on the devices for themselves. Including his personal pair.

    The demo was set to nothing more than a looping fireworks video, but I got to have a first-hand experience with what Google's Glass is like for those wearing it right now (side note: Sergey was personally placing the glasses on...

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    Sergey Brin loans out his Glasses
  • Update
    16 about 2 years ago 227

    Android 4.1 Jelly Bean hands-on impressions (update: video!)

    We've shown you the Google Nexus 7 by Asus and told you about the surprising quality you'll get starting at $199, but the most important part of the tablet is arguably the software that's inside. Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is here at Google I/O, and we've just spent some quality time with the new revision of the OS. As you'd expect from the ".1," it's not a giant leap forward from Ice Cream Sandwich on phones, but it brings some fairly exciting new features, major tweaks, and brings the tablet...

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    Smartphone as companion is the theme
  • Update
    15 about 2 years ago 213

    Nexus Q can't be used standalone, powered exclusively by Android devices on the same network

    With the Nexus Q, Google is planting its flag in the living room, allowing users to share media from Google Play with their home entertainment center. But unlike its closest competitor, the Apple TV, the Nexus Q isn't a standalone platform and requires an Android smartphone or tablet connected to the same Wi-Fi network to access content. The Nexus Q requires one or more Android 4.1 devices to provide access videos or music offered on Google Play, though the company says support for Android...

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    Apple TV this is not
  • Update
    14 about 2 years ago 64

    Google Nexus 7: ebooks' sleeping giant finally has its own reader

    Tablets are insanely versatile, and Google's selling its new entry as a total content device with brand new Jelly Bean bells and whistles. Still, let's face it: at this size and price point, the Nexus 7's natural competitors are first and foremost reading-centric tablets like Amazon's Kindle Fire. And make no mistake: Google is selling this as a reading device, adding magazines to Google Play and touting its bookstore as "the world's largest ebook collection." That's the play here:...

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    Google needs to stop the Kindle and Nook from bleeding Android dry
  • Update
    13 about 2 years ago 57

    Android 4.1 Jelly Bean in pictures

    Google is very good about launching its emulators of the newest versions of Android just as they announce them, and today is no different — Jelly Bean is available now for developers to begin tooling with and testing their apps on. We've taken the opportunity to install the new SDK to spend some extended time with the new operating system, so join us, won't you?

    The first thing we noticed after booting up Android 4.1 is that this really is a fairly minor update — the major changes that were...

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    What does Jelly Bean have to hide?
  • Update
    12 about 2 years ago 51

    Chrome for Android leaves beta, available now for Android 4.0 devices

    Google has just announced the release of the first stable version of Chrome for Android, now available on Google Play for Android 4.0 devices. As expected, Google says that the update brings stability and performance fixes, as well as some "minor UI adjustments, especially for tablets." When we first played with the Chrome for Android beta, we were impressed with its functionality and speed compared to the traditional Android browser — be sure to check out our impressions of the software, and...

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    Chrome for Android: fully baked
  • Update
    11 about 2 years ago 189

    Google announces Google Glass Explorer Edition, $1,500 pre-order shipping next year

    Google has just revealed a new Google Glass Explorer Edition of its prototype camera-equipped glasses at I/O 2012. Pre-orders are open today, only for attendees of the I/O conference, and will cost $1,500 for a delivery early next year. As Sergey Brin himself confesses, this is by no means intended to be a consumer product, but Google's keen to get the Project Glass hardware out into people's hands and onto their faces.

    Explore!
  • Update
    10 about 2 years ago 82

    Google Nexus Q home media streamer hands-on

    Today, Google introduced its long-rumored media streaming box, and it's called the Nexus Q. The Android-powered base station allows users to seamlessly share media from their smartphone or tablet with their home entertainment center. Today at Google I/O, we had an opportunity to see the new streaming box first-hand.

    A closer look at Google's magic ball
  • Update
    9 about 2 years ago 124

    Google shows off Project Glass at I/O with live skydiving and bike jumps (video)

    Google's Sergey Brin admits that Project Glass may not be as polished as the Nexus 7, but he's just showed off a live skydiving video recorded with the glasses. One of Brin's friends dived out of a plane onto the roof of Moscone while streaming the whole thing through Project Glass in a Hangout. After the diver landed on the roof, Brin switched to a feed of some bikers also wearing glasses, who then launched off the side of the building using ramps, followed by yet another athlete who...

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    Best tech demo ever
  • Update
    8 about 2 years ago 24

    Google announces tablet version of Google+ for Android today, iPad "soon"

    Google has just announced Google+ for tablets on stage at I/O. The app is available for Android today, and Google says the iOS version will be available "soon." Google says that more users engage with Google+ on mobile than desktops, and a tablet version of it has been sorely missing. The app itself, from what we can tell, looks very slick, with photos front and center to the content, very large in the streams, organizing content based on popularity.


    Check out our full live blog of...

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    Finally, Google+ for tablets!
  • Update
    7 about 2 years ago 138

    Google Nexus 7 vs. Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet, and Galaxy Tab 2 7.0

    As expected, Google unveiled its own 7-inch tablet today at the start of the company's I/O conference. Asus is helping Google build its tablet, co-branded once it's available in mid-July. Google's Nexus 7 is clearly going head-to-head with other low-cost Android tablets, including Amazon's Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble's Nook Tablet — but how do they compare?

    The Nexus 7 has the specs advantage when it comes to its processor, featuring a quad-core Tegra 3 — the first 7-inch tablet to do so....

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    Which 7-inch tablet is for you?
  • Update
    6 about 2 years ago 193

    Google's $299 Nexus Q streaming media player announced, pre-orders start today

    The Play Store may have spilled the beans ahead of schedule, but now Google has officially announced the Nexus Q, an audio and video streaming appliance for users at home. It's a cloud-oriented device, designed to pull media from the Google Play Store as well as YouTube. The Q delivers the media to your television or a set of external speakers — it features a 25-watt amplifier as well — and is powered by the same chipset as the Galaxy Nexus. It features ethernet, Bluetooth, and NFC...

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    Google takes on AirPlay
  • Update
    5 about 2 years ago 749

    Google Nexus 7 tablet from Asus: hands-on video and photos

    The Asus Nexus 7, Google's first tablet in the Nexus family, is here. You're looking at it right now. We just got our first hands-on pictures of the device... and you'll find impressions, more photos and video right below.

    There's not that much left to know about the Nexus 7, because all the details leaked out in grand fashion this morning and they're now all confirmed. Most importantly, the 7-inch tablet will come pre-loaded with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, Google's latest operating...

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    Spilling the final beans on Google's $200 tablet
  • Update
    4 about 2 years ago 171

    Google Nexus 7 official: $199 tablet from Asus ships mid-July with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

    It's been on display in full form since before I/O started, but only now is it official: the Nexus 7 tablet from Asus. Built for Google Play, running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. It has a 7-inch, 1280 x 800 HD display, a quad-core Tegra 3 processor with 12-core GPU, and 1GB RAM. There's also a 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera and all the sensors you'd expect from a modern slate, including NFC (there is no 3G / 4G option). Google is touting nine hours of HD video playback and up to 300 hours of...

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    The first device that ships with Chrome as the standard browser
  • Update
    3 about 2 years ago 38

    Google Now: search based on time and location

    As part of its Android Jelly Bean update, Google has just announced Google Now — a card-based search interface that takes your location and the time into effect to give you more useful information. Google Now works by using your search history, calendar, and location to help make search more relevant. For example, if you have a calendar event, Google Now "will help you get there on time" — if you take the bus, it tells you how long it will take to walk to the bus and when the next bus will...

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    Search continues to get smarter
  • Update
    2 about 2 years ago 385

    Android 4.1 Jelly Bean coming in July with Project Butter UI, Google Now, richer notifications

    The next major upgrade to Android will be version 4.1 Jelly Bean, it has been announced at Google I/O today. Project Butter is the major new innovation in Android 4.1, focused on making the entire UI "fast, fluid and smooth." That includes triple buffering in the graphics pipeline, to ensure consistent frame rates with interface animations. Google's I/O demo showed two Galaxy Nexus devices side by side, one running Ice Cream Sandwich and the other on Jelly Bean, with the latter offering a...

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    The Jelly Beans are coming!
  • Update
    1 about 2 years ago 122

    Google Nexus Q home media streamer revealed on Google Play Store for $299

    We'd heard rumors that Google had been testing a home entertainment device for release this year, and it appears they were true: the page for the $299 Google Nexus Q has appeared on the Google Play Store. Billed as a "social streaming media player," the Nexus Q appears to be a cloud-based device that streams music, video, and YouTube videos, and lets users share and create playlists from their own devices. The Nexus Q will also do double-duty as an amplifier, letting users plug in their own...

    Continue reading »

    Google makes its living room hardware push
  • Original Story
    about 2 years ago 213

    Google's Nexus 7 by Asus leaked: full specs, images, and video!

    As if it wasn't clear enough already, we've just received more evidence that the Nexus 7 is real. The above image of an Asus-branded Nexus 7 tablet is live on the Google Play store right now. A tipster let us know that if you change the URL of this Galaxy Nexus banner on Google Play, it reveals an Asus-branded Nexus 7 tablet, running what we expect will be introduced as Jelly Bean later today. At first glance, this looks like it could be an expanded version of the Ice Cream Sandwich phone...

    Continue reading »

    After these leaks, Google might need to double down on secrecy
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