Google I/O 2018: Here's what to expect and how to watch

Google's annual developer conference kicks off today. Exactly what Google has in store for the opening keynote is a bit of a mystery, but we can take a few educated guesses.
Written by Jason Cipriani, Contributing Writer

In the past, Google has used Google I/O to announce new hardware, such as virtual reality products and smart speakers equipped with personal assistants, as well as new services like Google Allo and Photos.

Read also: Google I/O vs. Microsoft Build: Dueling yet similar visions for developers | Android Oreo vs Android One vs Android Go: All their differences, explained

Exactly what Google has in store for this year's opening keynote is a bit of a mystery, but we can take a few educated guesses. Here's everything you need to know about Google I/O 2018.

Google I/O 2018: When is it and where is it?

Google I/O is staying in Mountain View, Calif., at the Shoreline Amphitheater. It will last from May 8 to May 10, with keynotes, sessions, and presentations over the course of the three days.

Google I/O 2018: What to expect from the show

  • More details surrounding Android P
  • Updates for Google Assistant and Google Home
  • Maybe Wear OS news?
  • More details regarding Google's new Chat service

Google uses the developer conference to announce new software products and tools for developers as well as consumers. Previously, we've seen previews of upcoming Android operating systems and previews of developer tools, such as Android Studio.

We already have a developer preview of Android P, the next version of Google's mobile operating system. At Google I/O we can expect the company to reveal more of the consumer-facing features, as well as open the Android Beta program to the general public.

Read also: Android P: New features, release date, and everything you need to know

Google Home, powered by Google Assistant, is a core part of the Google experience and an area where the company continues to compete with Amazon's Echo line of smart speakers. We're about due for some new hardware, at least for the standard Google Home that's approaching two years since it was announced.

Google recently rebranded Android Wear, it's wearable operating system, to Wear OS. The timing of the rebrand taking place ahead of Google I/O leaves some room for Google to focus on the future of Wear OS, and not the new name. Who knows -- maybe we'll see some new hardware.

Read also: Google Allo: Don't use it, says Edward Snowden

Google recently put its chat service Allo on hold to focus its efforts on Chat, a service that relies on SMS and wireless carriers to create an iMessage-like service, as The Verge reported. We will undoubtedly hear more about the rollout, carrier partners, and hopefully some sort of timetable as to when users will begin to see Chat features show up.

Google I/O 2018: How to watch the keynote

Google will livestream the event on YouTube, beginning Tuesday, May 8 from 10am PST. The schedule has the keynote ending at 11:30am PST. You can watch it live on YouTube:

Android P: All the new features and tools announced (so far)

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