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Here Are 10 Things You Need to Know About Google's Announcements Today


The developer conference I/O 2013 featured a number of impressive announcements. We offer this cheat sheet.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) announced a number of impressive changes today during the keynote address at its developers event. Here are the top 10 takeaways.

1. "OK, Google": A New Impressive Conversational Search

The future is here: A Google senior manager demonstrated how voice search has evolved. The new trick? All a user has to do is say, "OK Google," and start asking questions. An example: "OK Google, what`s the weather like in San Diego?" You can also ask contextually heavy things such as, "How far is it from here?" or "When is my flight?"

It's a function like Siri, although it seems more advanced. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) had better show something equally impressive at WWDC, its own developer conference, soon.

Want to join Google's search trial? Do it

2. Hello to Spotify: Google's Own Subscription Music Service at $9.99/Month

Google Play Music All Access is a brand new media service featuring "millions" of tracks from 22 genres, and it allows you to create personalized "radio" stations based on just one song selection.

The service starts today in the US, and it will roll out to other countries soon. Early users will get a discounted $7.99 per month price, though the price will eventually jump to $9.99 per month. Not sure if you need it? Then check out the 30-day free trial.

3. Google Maps Get a More Personal, Seamless, Fancy Design

Google also "reinvented" its Maps; both mobile and desktop versions are coming this summer. The updated versions provide a less cluttered interface with more personalization, better navigation options, and fantastic embedded imagery from Google Earth.

You can sign up here for the invite to be among the first to check it out.

4. "Make It Awesome" Button for Photos

Google might soon oust Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE) products for some users with new "Auto Awesome" and "Enhance" buttons to automatically improve users' pictures. You can tweak it and switch improvements off in case you don't like how Google's complex algorithms work.

5. No Key Lime Pie for Android (Yet?)

As predicted, Google did not introduced any major Android platform updates -- at least not yet. The company did name a number of great developer tools.

That was not surprising at all.

As the new head of Google Android, Sundar Pichai, recently said in an interview with Wired, "It's not a time when we have much in the way of launches of new products or a new operating system."

6. Google+ Redesign: Multi-Column Design and Auto Tagging

Google+ answered Facebook`s redesign with a major design revamp and a multi-column view for the news stream. What about automatic tagging for posts? Google has that covered, too.

And don`t forget the new heavily integrated Hangouts application for the Web, Android, and iOS! All these great things are expected to be available today.

7. Numbers: The Number of Android Users Has Grown to 900 Million

Yes, just 100 million to go before the number of Android users out there hits one billion, and Chrome now has 750 million active users.

There were also 48 billion apps installed on Google Play to date, with 2.5 billion added to the store in the last month alone.

8. A "Nexus"-ed Samsung Galaxy S4 With Bare Android? You Can Get it in June

Want to grab a carrier-unlocked Samsung (OTCMKTS:SSNLF) Galaxy S4 16GB with a Nexus-like ("pure Android") experience? Check out the Google Play store starting June 26. The price? $649.

9. Developers Get New Tools to Make Even Better Apps

With new tools, APIs, and features, including a special low-power location-tracking service, Android users will soon get a bunch of new impressive applications. Just allow some time for the developers to utilize it all.

10. Google CEO Delivered His Vision on Technology Advancement in Hoarse Voice

CEO Larry Page, who updated the public on his voice issues yesterday, delivered a touching speech on all the great opportunities that technologies could bring to people. Some of them were neatly summarized in this introductory video.

Page's voice was somewhat faint, but still firm. He took questions for about half an hour, addressing the issues of developing countries and tech advancements. It was a broad strategic overview, with no significant announcements or details revealed.

This year, Google I/O hosted 6,000 attendees in San Francisco from May 15 to May 17. The keynote aired on YouTube with more than 1 million people watching worldwide. We've just briefly scratched the surface of what has been announced. Watch out for more updates from I/O on soon.
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