Google I / O 2013 Takeaway: All Androids are Created Equal!
There was a time when Google developer conferences buzzed around Google Maps, the web toolkit, etc. But from the last conference onwards, the spotlight was on Android and Chrome in that order. Perhaps the huge opportunity to rest on smartphones has sunk deep into Google. A fact recognized by Larry Page himself when he joked that he would like to run the company through his smartphone.
Google has sought to integrate its other products with Android and update them on Android without having to update Android to match them in compatibility.
As mentioned in the previous paragraph, Android fans see a silver lining in limited Android updates. Blogs are plagued with how features introduced as of this edition do not necessarily need an update to the operating system. It provides material for the deal, as the basic premise for changing the version of an operating system is to allow you to reproduce all applications, whether they are old or futuristic. The various versions and configurations (from individual mobile hardware companies like Samsung, HTC, Sony, etc.) of Android were creating considerable firewalls to update even Google’s proprietary applications; applications that provide the quintessential Android experience. Google, through its update of functions, effectively addresses the problem of fragmentation, since Google+, Gmail, Google Maps, Google Play, the applications that are present in Android from the Froyo versions onwards and Google Music All Access that are Presented can now reside in Versions of Froyo onwards without the need for an upgrade. It seems that the fragmentation problem has been solved hopefully.
Android Study– This update has Android’s name stamped on it! That is, it is specific to Android. The news is that Google plans to introduce Android Studio to replace the existing Eclipse development environment for Android applications. Google collaborated with JetBrains to create Android Studio. Of course, this development has some loose ends to tie up, but Google feels that this IDE when released would help Android developers increase their productivity. Here’s how it might help:
- Combine the capabilities of Maven and Ant to create flexible, multi-flavored solutions.
- Excellent code editing capabilities, including searching for online resources and Android-specific customizations. It is powered by the advanced editor user interface that allows drag and drop widgets, simulate the output view on different hardware configurations, and even preview while editing in XML.
- Provides deep analytical ability to identify all types of errors
- It provides wizards based on preset templates and also access to other Google services.
- Provides easy migration of projects from Eclipse (as export) or import to Studio (of existing Eclipse IDE projects).
Google, like the Android operating system, has made Android Studio free and open source, which could be the sweetener.
Google Play: Android developers can use Google Play services to acquire the desired APIs to build maps, games or social networks (read Google+) on Android devices (mobile or tablet).
Gaming– Entertainment is moving to handheld devices in large numbers, prioritizing providing the same user experience as on PC / game console. Google has improved the user experience by introducing the following features:
- Leaderboards: A maximum of 100 leaderboards, both public and social, are provided to allow developers to engage users by allowing them to compare scores with other players. Leaderboards are automatically created for daily, weekly, monthly, or custom versions.
- Reward System: Developers can reward users for participating in the game by providing standard or incremental achievements that can be viewed in a user interface. They can use the development consoles to monitor achievements.
- Google provides Cloud Saving APIs to save game state and settings in the cloud.
- Developers can allow users to invite other players to the game or play with random users with the maximum limit set at 4.
Google makes it easy to develop location-aware applications by providing the following APIs:
Geofencing API– This API is used to define geographic boundaries. It also provides the following options:
- to create alert filters for customers leaving a particular area
- alter location updates in response to the customer’s locomotion habit (such as walking, riding, or driving) (see Activity recognition API)
- add or remove geographic boundaries
Merged Location Provider – This API uses an underlying schema to provide appropriate results for your query on locations, even complex-level queries. It’s fast, versatile, and consumes less battery.
Activity recognition provider– This API uses power sensors to detect current client activity, for example, driving, walking, idling, etc. This is used in conjunction with the Geofencing API to provide the appropriate updates to the client.
Single sign-on via Google+– Taking into account the fact that users frequently switch mobile devices and that these devices can run different operating systems, Google provides the API to log in via Google+ on any device. This eliminates the need to make services like Google Wallet, Games, Plus device specific. There are libraries for these services that respond to the auto-signature request using their method.
Google Cloud Messaging: Google has made app registration possible using their unique method. It also provides messaging to third-party servers through its two-way messaging (XMPP) using Cloud Connection Server. Users can sync notifications across devices using Google APIs to notify user.
Google Play Developer ConsoleGoogle has been supporting its huge Android developer community and this year’s conference added momentum.
Application translation service: Google’s localization support team allows you to take advantage of translation services for a nominal fee and publish the strings for translation in the language of your choice. If necessary, please request the appropriate localization sting in the graphics of the application, APK or in the sections About the product. This eventually helps developers reach a wider audience.
Analytics and monetization: Tracking the performance of an application is now easier. Google Play and Google Analytics provide complementary services such as application views and downloads and engagement metrics.
Google has introduced the Order Status API to allow developers to view the order status of an application from their servers. You have also decided not to charge trial accounts for in-app trial purchases.
Alpha and beta testing and staged releases: Google has added alpha-beta testing to allow developers to divide their applications into two versions, alpha and beta, and have them tested by different groups of users. If required, Google+ testers can also be added to test these versions.
From now on, developers can only roll out updates to their apps for a batch of users to evaluate their feedback. Developers can set the percentage of users who would use the update.
Perhaps for those expecting only Android chants at Google I / O 2013, it could be a buffer. But for those who are familiar with the maverick that Google is, they will attest to the crafty way in which it has dedicated itself to pleasing the Android community. Updates to Google Play, its services, the launch of Android Studio, cloud messaging, and the ability to log into Google services with no OS or hardware requirements are major changes to the game. In short, it is about updating the functions without the need to update the operating system.
Google’s I / O 2013 was an Android winner, in a quiet way!
* Androider = An Android fan who swears by him anytime, anywhere!