Google I/O 2018: Sundar Pichai bets big on AI in healthcare, Android P; JOMO, Shush make headlines

By Sreeraman Thiagarajan

started off the event on a rather cheesy note! He spoke about fixing bugs in things that matter such as the burger emoji and floating foam on beer mug emoji!

And, AI had to be on top of things.aims to open AI centres around the world, and utilise machine learning for revolutionising healthcare. But, it wasn’t just AI, there’s something forlovers, your trusted Google Assistant andP.

Here’s what was revealed:

AI in healthcare:

This will be a boon to healthcare.

Artificial Intelligence can help predict cardiovascular risk, and detect it non-invasively. Diabetic retinopathy which is the leading cause of eye cancer in, where Google is working with eye hospitals like Shankara to deploy Machine Learning for better screening of eye and predicting early on to detect chances of cancer. The company would also conduct field trials that would help to diagnose diabetic retinopathy in developing countries.

AI for accessibility:
Machine Learning can enhance accessibility. Google beautifully used a story about a developer who used Morse code to communicate with her family since childhood, and now she has moved on to using the Google Gboard with Morse code support; which would be made available later today. Gboard does about 8 billion auto corrections every day.

Smart compose for Gmail

You will now email a lot more than ever.

For all those who don’t like writing emails, this will be a boon. SmartCompose is coming to Gmail soon, again a Machine Learning-based word recommendation to make writing emails easy by giving suggestion on next word of a line in contextual way. Pichai joked that thanks to this feature he has been writing a lot more emails now.

Google Photos

Taking photos to a whole new level.

5 billion photos, now introducing Suggested Action on Google Photos which use AI to convert document photo to PDF, and fix exposure. You can make your child’s photos cuter, make colours pop, adjust the backdrop or even change old black and white pictures into coloured.

Google Assistant
You almost cannot imagine life without the Google Assistant. It now comes in 6 new voices. All the voices you hear on Google Assistant is that of a real person who recorded thousands of words in a real studio. Starting today, you will hear none other than John Legend’s voice on Google Assistant. Scott Huffman said that the Assistant was launched in India last year and has seen three times the growth.

The Google Assistant has gone through a transformation.

You don’t have to say ‘Hey Google’ anymore while making a request to Assistant. Starting in few weeks, you will be able to speek to Google Assistant in a manner of a natural conversation without having to say ‘Hey’ or ‘Ok Google’ intermittently. This feature is called Continued Conversation. The tech giant has also added ‘polite reinforcements’ in its conversation for giving better user experience even for children who interact with it.

Lilian Rincon, Director of Product Management, emphasised on how Google is trying to make interactions with the Assistant an immersive, interactive experience.

The Google Assistant has gone through a transformation, it can call up the salon and fix you an appointment. Beat that? The tech company likes to call this the Google Duplex, and you will be amazed to hear how the Assistant uses ‘umm’ and ‘ah’ in the conversation.

From FOMO to JOMO:
Google is one of those tech giants who cares about you and your digital wellbeing. It wants people to go from FOMO (fear of missing out) to JOMO (joy of missing out) in the following ways. It will understand your habits, help you focus on what matters, suggest people to switch off and wind down to find balance for their family.

Google is one of those tech giants who cares about you and your digital wellbeing.

One such feature is Android Dashboard, to slice and dice data of how you are using phone and tell people if they are over indulging on their phones. Imaging if you are binge watchingfor too long and it suggests to take a break.

Google is also introducing a YouTube Notification digest which combines a bunch of notification to invoke users in a more optimised way to help them have a digital wellbeing.

AI comes to:
With news and fake news doing the rounds, Google is using AI to reimagine how we read news. Trystan Upstill showcased a new feature, Newscasts, a preview of news story where users can slide through a news ‘card’ on the phone screen to get a digest of everything that piece of news story must offer.

All this to help you understand the full story and make information available to everyone in the same way.

Google News can now place relationship between entities such as people, places, and news to stitch together a story to give complete coverage from multiple sources, fact check suggestion along with a suggestion by AI on why it is being displayed to you. All this to help you understand the full story and make information available to everyone in the same way.

Android P:
Obviously, the best was saved for the last. Dave Bruke said how Android has evolved from being available on a single device brand to being AI-driven today and being the world’s leading OS for mobile. He said, Android P now has 30% reduction in CPU app wakeups. It comes with adaptive brightness, a new feature to automatically adjust screen brightness based on the ambient environment of the phone’s location. New gesture navigation Android P for better control of volume, screen orientation.

Android P also has Wind Down mode which turn the screen into a grayscale mode and deters people from spending excessive amount of time before bed.

The Android Phas the ‘Shush’ feature which will automatically mute your phone once you put the device screen down on a table, of course, starred contacts will be able to call and reach the user at any point even if DND is turned on.

Android P also has Wind Down mode which turn the screen into a grayscale mode and deters people from spending excessive amount of time before bed. Users can also set a timer for wind down mode.

Android P Beta coming out soon for developers to try things out that was announced at IO.

Google MAPS:
220 countries and 1 billion people use this feature all over the globe. With AI, Google can automatically add addresses to maps with ML, especially for countries like Nigeria where the Google’s ML has redefined the map know we knew before. Maps now lets you search for experiences, from neighbourhood dance c
lasses to culinary experiences. Introducing VPS: Visual Positioning System for helping us with navigation beyond GPS. It’s a combination of using GPS along with the camera on phone. Next time you are trying to walk with Google Maps, you can simply invoke the camera, point it at a nearby establishment and be guided with virtual signboard directing you to your destination.

Sreeraman Thiagarajan is co-founder of Agrahyah Technologies and listed at Google Developers Expert for Marketing. He tweets at @sreeraman

Google I/O Day 1 Highlights: Strike Life Balance With Android P, Maps Get AR Upgrade, AI Pl…


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It’s All About Emojis

Even before the event kicked off, CEO Sundar Pichai assured fixing bugs in things that matter the most, like burger emoji and floating foam on beer mug emoji.

With 7000 people present at Shoreline Amphitheater for the event this year, Pichai and his team amused the audience with their newly-developed features at Mountain View, California.

Better and smoother updates in AI, Assistant, Photos, News will soon make lives easy for most people.

Missed the live event? Here’s a quick round-up of what Google has in store for your in the coming few days, weeks and months.

Google I/O: Thoughtful Kits And Eager Eyes Keep Shoreline Amphitheater Buzzing


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High On Anticipation

As Google CEO Sundar Pichai prepares to take the stage for the big event, all eyes are on digital screens for what he has to say in his keynote speech.

The search engine giant will talk about the future of Android and Google’s AI efforts. Moreover, there will also be news on everything from its new wearable platform, Wear OS, and Google Assistant to Android TV, Google Home, Google Play, and Search.

Here’s a quick look at the backyard of Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California, where the anticipation is building high.

(Images: Sreeraman Thiagarajan)