Google I/O: Announcements Covering Android 15 AI Innovations and the Pixel 8A

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Google I/O, the annual developers’ conference hosted by the tech giant, is approaching in less than a fortnight. We anticipate insights into Android 15, AI enhancements, and potentially new additions to the Pixel lineup.

The specifics of Google’s keynote unveiling on May 14 at Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California, remain undisclosed. Following the keynote, developer breakout sessions will span May 14 and 15. Last year, Google introduced the Pixel Fold and Pixel 7A, alongside features like Magic Editor in Photos and Immersive View for Maps. Given this precedent, we may anticipate a blend of hardware unveilings and software updates this year.

Rumors and speculation hint at what Google may showcase during this year’s I/O event.

Google IO Announcements Covering Android 15 AI Innovations and the Pixel 8A
Google IO Announcements Covering Android 15 AI Innovations and the Pixel 8A

Pixel 8A

Google is expected to introduce the next installment of its budget-friendly Pixel A series, likely named the Pixel 8A. These cost-effective devices offer many flagship-level features found in premium Pixel phones. For instance, the Pixel 7A shares the same processor as the Pixel 7 and boasts a camera with similar capabilities.

According to leaks from Android Authority, the Pixel 8A might inherit the Tensor G3 processor from the Pixel 8, along with a 120Hz refresh rate display.
It might also sport a camera setup similar to the Pixel 7A, with three lenses: a 64-megapixel main camera, a 13-megapixel ultrawide camera, and a 13-megapixel front-facing camera for selfies. Another rumor from TechDroider suggests that the Pixel 8A could be available in three color options: blue, porcelain (beige), and obsidian (black).

The Pixel 8A is anticipated to incorporate AI tools introduced with the Pixel 8 series, such as Best Take and Magic Editor. Google has extended features like Circle to Search to some of its more affordable models like the Pixel 7A and Pixel 6 series. It’s likely that Google will continue this trend by bringing these innovative features to a slightly more budget-friendly device.

When it comes to affordability, what might be the price of the Pixel 8A? The Pixel 7A is priced at $500, and according to a rumor from German site WinFuture, Google may continue its trend of slightly increasing prices by offering the Pixel 8A at $550. For context, the flagship Pixel 8 is priced at $700, so opting for the Pixel 8A would still save you some money. Depending on the features packed into the Pixel 8A, this could make it a compelling choice.

Android 15

At Google I/O, we typically get a preview of upcoming software features. It’s likely we’ll get more details about the next version of their mobile operating system, Android 15, and its expected public launch during this year’s keynote. Android 15 is currently in beta, introducing new features and enhancements geared towards productivity, privacy, and security. For example, it introduces support for app archiving and unarchiving, allowing users to conveniently free up space on their devices. Additionally, it includes end-to-end encryption for contact keys and expanded support for satellite connectivity.

AI updates

At last year’s I/O, the buzzword was undoubtedly AI, and we can expect a similar focus this year as Google and other companies continue to harness this rapidly advancing technology.

Updates on the rollout of Gemini, Google’s competitor to ChatGPT, could be on the agenda. Google has indicated that Gemini will become the primary assistant on Android phones for users who download the app and opt in, replacing Google Assistant. There’s also chatter about Apple potentially incorporating Gemini AI models into its upcoming iPhones, but details may not emerge until Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June.

Additionally, we might see enhancements to existing AI features like Circle to Search or entirely new AI capabilities designed for mobile devices teased at I/O.

It’s uncertain whether Google will unveil the second generation of its Pixel Fold at I/O this year, but rumors suggest a possible launch later in the year. Speculation even hints that the device could join Google’s flagship Pixel lineup as the Pixel 9 Pro Fold rather than just the Pixel Fold 2, as reported by Android Police.

Google has been relatively quiet about its Wear OS smartwatch software since announcing its partnership with Samsung to co-develop the operating system at I/O years ago. We anticipate other improvements and new features across Google’s suite of products, including Search, Maps, Drive, and more.

As always, we’ll be watching for any surprises from Google. Stay tuned for real-time updates from CNET once May 14 arrives.

 

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