Google I/O 2024 Kicks Off With A New Focus On AI

Everyone’s talking about AI right now and following OpenAI’s announcement of an upgraded ChatGPT and with Apple set to announce new AI features for the iOS 18 software update next month, it was Google’s turn today.

The Google I/O developer conference has kicked off today, and as expected, AI was a key focus.

The event was a monster one and included a variety of different announcements. We’re going to run through some of the main ones right here.

Project Astra

An experimental project, Google says Astra will bring the Gemini generative AI to cameras and allow those cameras to provide a feed that can then be interpreted by Gemini itself.

It’s similar to what OpenAI showed off yesterday and allows people to point their phone at something and have it explained to them, whether that’s a math problem or something much more interesting.

Imagine 3 and Veo

Generative AI is very much the order of the day right now and Google announced a new AI model that’s designed to create images called Imagine 3. It can understand prompts and create images from words, we’re told, but it can go beyond images as well.

It’ll create music as well while the Veo AI model can also be used to create videos, too.

The Gemini App

Google’s new Gemini app is similar to Google Assistant but turned up to 11 and it’s set to be used in much the same way. It’ll work with text and voice while support for a more conversational way of working is included.

AI and Android

As you might expect, AI is coming to Android itself and Google says that it’s adding Gemini as the standard AI assistant while adding more functionality. The existing AI Talkback feature is getting a Gemini upgrade so that images can be described in detail, a real boon for accessibility. AI will also be used across Android including helping to deal with the usual array of spam callers that we’re all so familiar with. Gemini will listen to calls and then warn if it suspects that a potential scam is underway, too.

Not all of this is imminent, though. google is still working on some of these features and, knowing Google, some could even get killed off before they see the light of day.

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