10 Big New Android Features From I/O: Private Space, Wallet Cards, AI in Google TV, More

Android at Google IO

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If you fell asleep during yesterday’s keynote because the only thing Google wanted to talk about was Gemini and AI, you are not alone. Many of us were hoping for more details on the next version of Android, Google TV happenings, Wear OS, Google in cars, etc., yet that didn’t happen because Google is currently still in love with a future powered by its AI stuff. Thankfully, Google gave us the goods today, although not with a splashy keynote.

Throughout several blog posts, Google shared what the near future will look like for its other platforms. For this post, we’re diving into a general Android recap, because there is a lot and I’m sure you don’t have time to read through it all.

Ready to find out what’s new in Android at Google I/O? Here we go.

  • Private space: This is official as a secure space in the phone where you can keep sensitive apps. It lives under an additional layer of authentication and as a separate user profile. You can choose to lock it with your phone’s device lock or it can have its own lock factor. The private space lives inside of a separate container in your phone’s launcher, plus user generated or downloaded content remain separate from the main or non-private space.
  • Theft detection lock: Thanks to AI, Google says that if someone snatches the phone from your hand and tries to get away, your phone can recognize this. This motion could then trigger your phone to be locked down. We can’t wait to learn more about this, but for now, expect it later this year, likely with the launch of Android 15.
  • Protection from fraud apps: Through Google Play Protect (and with on-device AI helping), your phone will be able to run a threat detection analysis to see if apps are doing shady things in real-time. Should Google Play Protect find something, it can disable the app or warn users about it.
  • RCS in Messages in Japan: I didn’t realize that RCS wasn’t in Japan, but it will soon be, starting with KDDI.
  • Google Wallet cards from photos: I swear this was supposed to launch already, but Google is now saying that you’ll soon be able to use Google Wallet to take a picture of almost any card and turn it into a Wallet card. These could be any passes or cards, not just those with barcodes or QR codes. Think about library cards, event tickets, or insurance cards that might not be with the times.
  • AR content in Google Maps: AR content is coming to Google Maps through your phone, giving you more immersive ways to see locations around you, starting in Paris and Singapore. Google notes that this will really be fun when their extended reality (XR) platform – that they are building with Samsung and Qualcomm – launches at some point.
  • More apps in cars: Max, Peacock, and Angry Birds are coming soon to select cars with Google built-in. We also wrote earlier about Rivian adopting Google Cast and getting a native YouTube app too.
  • AI on Google TV: Google TV is getting AI that will give you AI-generated descriptions (personalized for you) on home screens with shows or movies you might want to watch. I have no idea if this will be good or useful, but we’ll try and withhold judgement for now.
  • Wear OS 5 updates: We have an entire write-up on this, but Wear OS 5 is coming and it adds big improvements to battery life when you try to perform endurance activities, like running a marathon. Google is talking about Wear OS 5 using 20% less power when compared to Wear OS 4 and running long activities.
  • Fast Pair improvements: Fast Pair will soon come in handy as some sort of compliment to the new Find My Device experience. You’ll be able to track your Fast Pair device’s battery life and location later this month.

So yeah, some big Android stuff there, along with the Android 15 Beta 2 that is available today.

// Google



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