Google’s highly anticipated I/O developer conference kicked off with a focus on the underlying generative AI technology that powers its most popular products. With billions of users worldwide, Google aims to demonstrate how artificial intelligence plays a central role in its core services and products, including the new Pixel devices. Here are the key highlights from the Google I/O 2023 keynote:
- Expanding Bard’s Reach: Google has opened up Bard, its AI chatbot, to 180 countries worldwide. Previously limited to the US and the UK, Bard now allows users from around the globe to experience its capabilities in English, Japanese, and Korean. Powered by Google’s language model LaMDA, Bard can answer detailed questions and even write and debug code in multiple programming languages. The chatbot will also integrate Google Images and Google Lens for a more immersive user experience.
- Introducing PaLM 2: Google unveiled PaLM 2, a powerful large-language model capable of a wide range of tasks, including coding, reasoning, multilingual translation, and natural language generation. Trained on over 100 spoken word languages, PaLM 2 excels at handling nuanced phrases, idioms, and scientific texts. It powers more than 25 Google products behind the scenes, with a medical version called “Med-PaLM 2” achieving an expert level in answering medical exam questions.
- AI Enhancements in Workspace: Google continues to integrate AI features into its Workspace apps. AI capabilities such as smart compose, smart replies, and generating summaries have already aided users in writing over 180 billion times. Now, Gmail and Docs on mobile will benefit from the same generative AI capabilities, allowing users to rewrite emails in a specific style or tone. Sheets will also include automatic table generation, simplifying project management.
- Supercharged Search with Converse: Google is introducing Converse, a new product that enhances search results through generative AI features. While the homepage remains familiar, Converse synthesizes complex query search results. Although it’s still in the experimental phase, Labs users will gain access in the coming weeks through the Google app or desktop version of Google Chrome.
- Introducing Pixel Fold: Google entered the foldable smartphone market with the launch of Pixel Fold. With a book-style design similar to Oppo Find N, this premium device features a durable hinge, water resistance, and Google’s Tensor G2 chip. Aimed at enthusiasts, the Pixel Fold’s dual screens and advanced features offer a unique user experience.
- Pixel 7a: Google aims to capture the premium mid-range market with the Pixel 7a. As a more affordable version of the flagship Pixel 7, it retains the tensor processor and design but offers improved camera capabilities. Priced competitively, the Pixel 7a presents a strong alternative to devices like the iPhone SE and OnePlus 11R.
- Pixel Tablet’s Return: After years of absence, Google reintroduced the Pixel Tablet. Priced at $499, this tablet offers a unique approach with a wireless dock that functions as a charging station and speaker. Users can transform the tablet into a smart display, similar to the Amazon Echo Show. The concept of a versatile “family tablet” holds promise, but the software experience will play a crucial role in its success.
Google’s I/O 2023 keynote showcased the company’s commitment to harnessing the power of artificial intelligence across its product lineup. From expanding the reach of AI chatbot Bard to unveiling advanced language models like PaLM 2, Google continues to push the boundaries of what AI can achieve. With enhancements in Workspace AI, supercharged search capabilities with Converse, and the introduction of Pixel Fold, Pixel 7a, and Pixel Tablet, Google is poised to provide innovative experiences to users worldwide.
Stay tuned for further updates as Google continues to shape the future of technology with its AI-driven solutions.