What to Expect at Google I/O 2024, and How to Watch It

The chirping of birds, the buzzing of bugs, the soft patter of Google CEO Sundar Pichai’s shoes as he bounds across the stage. The sounds of spring are here, so you know what that means: Google I/O is blooming.

Hot on the heels of Apple’s iPad launch event last week, Google is going all out for its I/O developer conference on Tuesday, May 14. The event is taking place at Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California, just down the road from Google’s headquarters. The keynote starts at 10 am PDT on Tuesday, and as usual, it will be livestreamed. Expect to hear and see updates about Android 15, Google search, the already announced Pixel 8A budget phone, and just an absolute torrent of news about the tech topic of the decade: artificial intelligence.

AI All the Way Down

While Google’s Gemini AI platform has experienced some growing pains, the company is still eager to put its generative AI offerings into any and all of its services: search, its photo and video tools, and its workspace suite of tools like Gmail and Google Docs. Google has also been slowly infusing AI features into its Google Assistant, so it will be interesting to see whether those new capabilities result in a more evolved form of natural-language voice assistant, or more of a true AI assistant that acts as an agent to perform tasks through all your connected services.

The company will, of course, show off features from its upcoming Android 15 mobile operating system, more in-car integration through Android Auto, and its smartwatch software Wear OS. Expect each of those to be newly endowed with all sorts of exciting (and maybe slightly creepy) AI-powered features.

Google’s AI announcements could also offer a hint at whatever news Apple might have in store for its WWDC developer conference keynote, which will take place June 10. Just a couple months ago, news trickled out that Apple may be working with Google to wrangle the latter’s Gemini AI platform into iOS. Neither company has officially confirmed the news, and it’s not entirely clear what such an uneasy partnership between the two mobile heavyweights might look like on the iPhone. Google’s presumably AI-heavy keynote announcements could provide a hint at whatever is being cooked up on Apple devices.

Hard Where?

I/O is a software-focused event, but that hasn’t stopped Google from using the keynote to announce new hardware devices in the past. If the dearth of recent leaks about the company’s ambitions are any indicator, this year may be slimmer on the hardware front that I/Os past.

Generally speaking, Google is usually pretty unbothered about keeping its new gadgets under wraps before a big public event. Details about its upcoming Pixel 8A phone leaked a couple weeks ago, but Google officially announced the device last week. (The phone goes on sale on May 14, the same day as I/O.) Google will probably talk about its new Pixel on the block, and how it will utilize Android 15 and Gemini AI.

It’s always possible that another device might appear. Google announced its first Pixel Fold at I/O last year, and that’s probably due for an upgrade at some point, but we aren’t expecting that to come this month. Google has also been keeping quiet about any new augmented reality tech it’s working on, though it has shown concepts like Project Starline and language-translating smart glasses at past I/O events. We really expect that with so much attention being paid to artificial intelligence development, Google will likely make its AI announcements the star of the show.

Watch This Space

Google’s keynote address, which should open with remarks from Pichai before the team rolls out all the new stuff, starts Tuesday, May 14, at 10 am PDT (1 pm EDT). You can watch it on Google’s I/O website or on Google’s YouTube channel. The videofeed is also embedded right here on this page.

Beyond the main keynote, there’s a subsequent developer-focused keynote starting at 1:30 pm PDT (4:30 EDT), viewable using the same links as the first stream.