Updates from Google I/O – What is New on Google Play and Chrome

 900M Androids

Once again, the Google I/O event was an opportunity for Google to showcase what magic and innovation they have been cooking up in their labs. This year, they did not disappoint and came through as usual. Here is my take on what I loved about the new developer tools.

900 million Androids activations as of 2013 was probably the big opening news during the event. The android ecosystem is truly amazing and continues to grow. Another notable addition was Cloud Save when gaming which allows you to pause a game and continue playing on other devices.

 Google Play

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 Optimization was also a big deal during the event. Google now offers optimization tips to help you see where you can improve your apps. This includes giving you such services like App Translation Services and tablet usage to help you determine where your users are coming from and how you can make their experiences better.

Referral tracking is another new feature to help you determine which ads are most effective. By showing which channels are bringing you most traffic, usage metrics will also be available together in the same place without having to navigate to Google Analytics.

Revenue Graphs now allow you to see revenue streams at your fingertips down to specific countries and time. Beta Testing & Staged Rollouts were also introduced to help you manage app rollouts.

Chrome

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Chrome was created to make the Web a better place. Google announced that the Chrome user growth has now reached 750 million active users. With most of this increasing new growth is coming from mobile, Google showcased a demo of Web GL which comes to Chrome that was not available just last year.

The browser is a means and not an end in itself, and Google seems to be concentrating on bringing Chrome capabilities to mobile by increasing JavaScript speeds. The introduction of WebP image format was also showcased with an animated GIF of a cat.

Video formats encoded in H.264 and VP9 were also showcased, with the later being 69 percent smaller which would translate to less bandwidth costs. To enable adoption of these new technologies, Google introduced data compression on Chrome for Mobile to enable web pages load faster. It was also announced that YouTube will soon be offering support for the new VP9 video format.

Autocomplete for checkout has also been simplified to make shopping on mobile phones much easier. One you do an initial checkup, Chrome saves up all of your info. The next time you come to fill out the checkout form, it is automatically populated saving time.

You can also build your own HTML tags with the introduction of web components which is where Google wants to take web development.

A nice demo of a game using Web sockets to keep different devices synchronized during gameplay was also showcased.

Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview: A Quick Overview

As part of the Google I/O conference, Seesmic has released Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview which offers support for Twitter, Facebook, and even Google Buzz.  Seesmic Desktop 2 is built on Silverlight and is available for both Windows and Mac.

To get started with Seesmic Desktop 2, visit the Seesmic download page.  You will be prompted to download and install Silverlight if you don’t have it already.

Once the installation has completed, you need to add your accounts.

I just added my Twitter and Facebook accounts.  A new feature in Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview is the ability to add Google Buzz accounts.

When your accounts have been added, click Save to view the main screen.  This is where you can add multiple columns using the navigation on the left.

Posting an update is easy with Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview.  Click in the update box at the top of the screen and type your status.

Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview lets you change your client’s background.  This can either be a solid color or an image.  Click the gear icon in the bottom-left corner to change the background.

Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview works as a multiple-column client or single-column client.

Clicking on a username will show their profile picture along with their basic profile information.

Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview features has plugin support, much like Firefox.  While there is only a limited selection of plugins available, Seesmic has released an developer kit for making new plugins.

I’ve been running Seesmic Desktop 2 for about a day now and so far I haven’t had any problems.  Overall, the application has been quick and easy to use.

Give Seesmic Desktop 2 Preview a try and let us know your thoughts by commenting below!