The Google I/O Conference in San Francisco ended yesterday. In case you caved and blinked at any point over the last 48 hours, we've wrapped up the highlights:
Google Music Beta -- currently invite-only -- lets you upload music files to the cloud. You can then access, organize, and play the files from any connected device, including your computer, tablet and mobile phone. Music will auto-sync anytime you add it via your desktop, and will also be available offline:
Google TV Gets More Love
Google on the big screen took a backseat at this year's conference (last year it was all the rage), but those still in love with the idea will be happy to know that Google TVs will be getting access to the full Android Market — as well as Honeycomb 3.1 — this summer.
Essentially, this move aims to make developing apps for Google TV more appealing, resulting in much-needed boost to the overall concept.
Google Movies for Android
Google Movies for Android is a new app that allows users to rent and play movies on their mobile devices. The announcement is an extension of YouTube's 3,000 additional movies for its on-demand rental service.
After two long years in the development stage, Google Chrome OS notebooks are hitting the shelves on June 15th.
Chrome OS is an attempt at a cloud-based operating system. Unlike traditional operating systems, Chrome OS only runs web-based applications through a modified version of the Chrome browser. Perks include a faster startup time and a longer battery life.
Samsung, one of the first two companies launching Chrome OS powered devices, will offer a 12.1-inch screen (US$ 429 for Wi-Fi and US$ 499 for 3G), while Acer’s device will be an 11.6-inch display (US$ 349 and up).
You'll find these devices on Amazon.com and in Best Buy stores nationwide.
Honeycomb has been upgraded to version 3.1. Upgrades started with Motorola Xoom customers now and are slated to hit Google TV this summer. The updated OS brings expandable widgets, support for USB peripherals (cameras, joysticks, etc.), enhanced multitasking support for more fluid transitions and reduced crashes.
Ice Cream Sandwich
And speaking of operating systems: The up and coming Android 4.0, a.k.a. "Ice Cream Sandwich," has been designed to run on tablets, mobile phones and more.