So let’s say you took a trip to Chicago. There’s some beautiful architecture there, and during your boat tour down the Chicago river, you took lots of photos. But it’s hard to remember which building is which later on. Now by activating lens, you can identify some of the cool buildings in your photos, like the second tallest skyscraper in the US: Willis Tower. You can even pull up directions and get the hours for the viewing deck. And later, while visiting the art institute, you might take photos of a few paintings you really love. In one tap you can learn more about the painting and the artist. And the screenshot that your friend sent you of that bike rental place, just activate lens and you can tap the phone number and make the call right from the photo.
Lens will be rolling out in Google Photos later this year, and we’ll be continually improving the experience so it recognizes even more objects and lets you do even more with them. And those are the updates for Google Photos.
Now let’s see what’s next from YouTube.
Susan Wojcicki – CEO, YouTube
Good morning, everyone. I am thrilled to be here at my first-ever I/O on behalf of YouTube.
So that opening video that we all just saw, that’s a perfect glimpse into what makes YouTube so special: the incredible diversity of content. A billion people around the globe come to YouTube every month to watch videos from new and unique voices, and we’re hard at work to make sure that we can reach the next billion viewers which you’ll hear about in a later I/O session today.
We want to give everybody an opportunity to watch the content on YouTube. So YouTube is different from traditional media in a number of ways. First of all, YouTube is open. Anyone in the world can upload a video that everyone can watch. You can be a vlogger broadcasting from your bedroom, a gamer live-streaming from your console, or a citizen journalist documenting events live from your phone on the front lines.
And what we’ve seen is that openness leads to important conversations that help shape society. From advancing LGBTQ rights to highlighting the plight of refugees, to encouraging body positivity. And we’ve seen in our numbers that users really want to engage with this type of diverse content. We are proud that last year we passed a billion hours a day being watched on YouTube, and our viewership is not slowing down.
The second way that YouTube is different from traditional media is that it’s not a one-way broadcast. It’s a two-way conversation. Viewers interact directly with their favorite creators via comments, mobile live-streaming, fan polls, animated gifs, and VR. And these features enable viewers to come together and to build communities around their favorite content.
So one of my favorite stories of a YouTube community is the e-NABLE network. A few years ago, an engineering professor named Jon Schull saw a YouTube video about a carpenter who had lost two of his fingers. The carpenter worked with a colleague for over a year to build an affordable 3D-printed prosthesis that would enable him to go back to work. They then applied this technology for a young boy who was born without any fingers.
So inspired by this video, the professor posted a single comment on the video asking for volunteers with 3D printers to help print affordable prostheses. The network has since grown into a community of over 6,000 people who have designed, printed, and distributed these prosthetics to children in over 50 countries.
So today, thousands of children have regained the ability to walk, touch, play, and all because of the one video, one comment, and that incredible YouTube community that formed to help. And that’s just one example of the many passionate communities that are coming together on YouTube around video.
So the third feature of this new medium is that video works on-demand on any screen. Over 60% of our watch time now comes from mobile devices, but, actually, our fastest growing screen isn’t the one in your pocket. It’s the one in your living room. Our watch time in our living room is growing at over 90% a year.
So let’s now welcome Sarah Ali, head of Living Room Products, to the stage to talk about the latest features in the living room.
Sarah Ali – Head of Living Room Products
Thank you, Susan. So earlier today you heard from Rishi about how people are watching YouTube on the TV via the Assistant. But another way that people are enjoying video is through the YouTube app which is available on over half a billion smart TVs, game consoles, and streaming devices. And that number continues to grow around the world.
So, when I think about why YouTube is so compelling in the living room, it isn’t just about the size of the screen. It’s about giving you an experience that TV just can’t match. First, YouTube offers you the largest library of on-demand content. Second, our recommendations build channels and lineups based on your personal interests and what you enjoy watching. And third, it’s a two-way interactive experience with features like voice control.
And today, I’m super excited to announce that we are taking the interactive experience a step further by introducing 360 video in the YouTube app on the big screen. And you know that you can already watch 360 videos on your phone or in your daydream headset, but soon you’ll be able to feel like you’re in the middle of the action, right from your couch, and on the biggest screen you own.
Now, one of my personal interests outside of work is to travel, and one place I’d love to visit is Alaska to check out the northern lights. So let’s do a voice search: Aurora borealis 360. Great. Let’s choose that first video. And now, using my TV remote, I’m able to pan around this video, checking out this awesome view from every single angle.
Traveling is great, especially when I don’t have to get on a flight, but 360 is now a brand-new way to attend concerts. I didn’t make it to Coachella, but here I can experience it like I was on stage.
And to enhance the experience even further, we are also introducing Live 360 in the living room. Soon, you’ll be able to witness moments and events as they unfold in a new truly immersive way. So whether you have a Sony Android TV or an Xbox One console, soon you’ll be able to explore 360 videos right from the comfort of your couch and along with your friends and family.