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Google I/O 2010 Postscript – Prediction Results and more from Mark Scheel of Digital Construction

Google I/O 2010 Postscript

The conference is over, and its time to summarize the experience.  Below I cover the predictions I got right, the ones I got wrong, predictions for 2011 and coverage of amazing technology, giveaways, food and more.  This post is full of pictures and links.

Google I/O is over and it’s time to see how I did on my predictions made before the event.

Here are five I got right

1. Flash 10.1 – The newest version of Android (2.2) was shown running Flash on a Nexus One.  Meanwhile some major players (NBC and Time Warner) have chosen to stick with Flash, even though Apple does not support it.

(Graphic hat tip to TwitBit, Boulder based mobile development gurus, and cool guys.)

2. 50,000 apps in the App Store – Thank You developers.  Was worthy of its own slide during a Keynote.  Nailed this one!

3. Flash game store on Android / Adobe CEO on stage.  Both were right.  The game store courtesy of MochiMedia, the Adobe CEO appearance, courtesy of GoogleTV.

4. Google Sketchup will surprise with Real Estate Implications – The 3D Warehouse is really, really neat, and totally appropriate for enhancing online maps of Real Estate listings.  I wonder which MLS will have all their properties mapped first.

5. New advertising network – Not only did Google emphasize how large and advertiser strong their network is (a shot at iAds), they showed off new mobile ads (insane localization and interactivity) and gave every attendee $100 credit to set up mobile ads – Spot on!

Bonus – I also hinted that Google would take their developing rivalry with Apple to the Keynote, and at the Huffington Post they were “struck by Google’s repeated, open criticism of Apple during a keynote presentation.”

Five predictions I got wrong

1. The gPad.  This was a major league swing and a miss.  Not only was their no gPad, their was not even a mention of one–the silence was deafening.  I learned over lunch one day that the Android team “laughed” at the Verizon announcement that Google was going to make (manufacture hardware) their own tablet device.  Here is my take.  Android is evolving so quickly that soon an Android tablet will be able to leapfrog the iPad experience.  Google is giving Apple the early adopters.  They did the same with smart phones, and they have since caught up.  They must reason they can do the same with tablets, and they want to get it right.  There will be Android Tablets this holiday season still but I don’t think they will be the cool ones that Google will give all Google I/O 2011 attendees.   Those will have the “Google Experience”, and you will know it because of the Google logo on the device.  I also feel they need the cross-device content (“gTunes”) to make the g-ecosystem more sticky … but that is a whole different topic!

2. Google Bookstore – Although Google will have a bookstore, it was not heavily featured like I thought.  Instead a surprise HTML 5 iTunes like competitor for music was quietly announced.

3. Pinch Zoom on all Android Devices – Swing and miss.  My assertion was way too optimistic.  My Motorola Cliq still runs Android 1.5, and embarrassingly could not even run the conference specific App.  Luckily I have a Droid and Evo now.

4. Major Real Estate Brand will announce new way to interact with Real Estate Data – Both Trulia (the one I was thinking of) and Zillow made appearances, but to the best of my knowledge they didn’t showcase anything new.

5. New awesome games for Android – This is a push.  Google tried to brag about their gaming platform, and they did have the Flash game store announcement, but I think Apple still has the edge here, and I didn’t see the Leapfrogging I was expecting.  Replica Island is neat, but it is no (who knows an awesome iPhone game I can stick here–put it in the comments).

Bonus – I did not predict I would meet a billionaire.  It was an unexpected thrill to shake hands and briefly chat with Sergey Brin.  Thanks Mr. Brin!

Here are 5 Google I/O 2011 predictions:

1. The Keynotes will run long
2. The party will be awesome
3. Emphasis on Tablet development
4. Android penetration in the US market will exceed iPhone’s
5. They will serve mints after lunch (my only suggested improvement to the conference team)

Random Party Photo – (tangentially related time killer)

One more random party photo – crazy “death” bike ride

Five best free items (Schwag and Oprah style giveaways):

1. Square hardware device
2. GoogleTV socks
3. Droid with free service on Verizon (one month)
4. Evo with free service on Sprint (one month) – This one deserves a little more emphasis.  This is one seriously awesome phone.  It works as a wireless hotspot, has 4G connection speeds, has a gorgeous display, is super fast, and I love it.

5. Conference t-shirt with QR codes, and a hint for the future – Even though I have a full sized Pac Man arcade game, I failed to notice the Pac Man reference in the t-shirt until after the awesome game on the Google home page.

Five peeks into the future with amazing technology

1. WebM and all the video hoopla.  I still maintain that I don’t really get this.  Apparently its a big deal that H.264 video might have patent royalties and its amazing that Google has open sourced a competing video standard.  If its so cool, why did a gazilllion American’s go tune into the BP Oil Spill, underwater, robo-cam on BP’s web site–and have to download Window’s Media Player.  Where is the revolution?

2. V8 on your phone.  Not the juice, but the Google Javascript engine.  Now javascript on your Android device is ridiculously fast.

3. HTML5 – From Thumbplay to MugTug, the ways we will use HTML5 in the future make me wonder if Apple was early to the party in the first version of the iPhone.  Remember how you had to use the web and their was no app store?  I think we are going back to that future soon.  As a developer this is pretty sweet.  I would love to write a rich web app and have it play nice on a HP WebOS tablet, an iPhone, and a gPad out of the box.

I guess this means Applets are out in the future:

Street Sign: “END JAVA” Taken during run in SF

4. Push intent to phone.  An intent is an Android term that roughly means an ‘action to be performed’ (“show map of x”, “play this mp3”, “browse to y”).  This is pretty sweet stuff.  The use case is you are doing something on your desktop computer but have to run, one click and the action you were performing is sent to your phone.  So you are searching for a restaurant, and now you want to walk there, push the map to your phone.  No doubt Apple will have something like this soon that will integrate the Mac to the iPad to the iPhone.  Have you seen IronMan2?  You know when Tony Stark controls the Congressional TV with his phone.  It’s like that in reverse. And by the way, it exists on Android today if you want to do some work.

5. App feedback.  You know on Windows how when something crashed you could send feedback to Microsoft (debug logs, etc.)?  Future Android phones will have the ability to send similar information from Force Close events directly to the developers of that App (and to Google).

Bonus – GoogleTV – Probably the worst demo I have ever seen, a total cluster.  They had to ask 5000 people to turn off their cellphones so their bluetooth keyboard would work (spoiler: it didn’t).  But this technology is pretty neat to anyone who hasn’t hand built a MythTV setup and will be big this holiday season.  Anyone remember that Batman movie where the TV Waves controlled society.  Tin-foil hat wearers beware, the omni-present GOOG is coming to your living room now.

Lets close with best food items of the conference, because who doesn’t love foodstuffs.

1. The all you can drink beer at the Party is hard to ignore.  Domestic, foreign, bottled, tap, they had it all.

2. The cups of reeses pieces.  They had these candy stands with plastic cups all over the place, and you could just fill up your cup with as much candy as you wanted.  I was partial to the Reese’s Pieces.  You and me E.T.

3. “It’s It” Ice Cream Sandwich.  A San Francisco Original, at lunch the first day.

4. Chicken soft shell tacos with guacamole.  Imagine you owned a Chipotle or Qdoba and walked in during the lunch rush and could take anything you wanted.  This was basically the lunch experience on day two.

5. Celery.  Alright, I didn’t eat any, but Sergey went for it.  Seriously?  I guess they were being Vegan friendly.

5b.  They did have Celery as an alternative cookie snack, but what I really want to tell you about is the cupcakes from Sibby’s Cupcakery with Google hand scripted on each one.

Bonus – Couple of nearby food notes.  First, thanks to the fine folks at Heirloom Cafe, it’s only a few weeks old and it’s awesome, incredible wine selection.  Check them out if you are in SF.  Next, somewhere near Redwood City I had the best taqueria experience (Taqueria El Grullense).  Great!  Finally, a little biz school nerdiness.  During my MBA, an International Business class trick question involved businesses from developing nations that penetrated developed nation markets (3rd world to 1st world).  The most famous example is Jollibee, a fast food joint from the Phillipines.  There is one directly across from Moscone West in SF and you bet your bottom dollar I had one of their burgers with Pineapple.

Final thoughts –

Google I/O was amazing.  A great educational experience as I got to dive deep into SEO, Analytics, Android, and Enterprise Google Tools.  A great exploratory experience as I got to go around the Sandbox and meet vendors and play with software and hardware powered by Google.  And great fun as I got to be live at two amazing Keynotes, part of an amazing party, and was plied with free pool, Wii and snacks throughout the conference.  Taking two days off for this recharged my batteries and has me reinvigorated for client work.

I would love to help improve your business by sharing some of my expert knowledge on Google products and services.  I fly this week to an MLS to conduct training.  Contact me to sign your organization up!

See you in 2011 Sergey.

Fairfarren friends, and thank you Vendor Alley.  I suspect I will be back.  If you have a blog and want me as a guest writer, let me know.  Sergey?

Mark Scheel is Principal of Digital Construction a firm serving clients from Coast to Coast and driving innovation in the Real Estate sector.  We love our clients, and we love new ones even more.  Contact us if you have a technical project that needs expert help.

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