Google I/O 2014 Keynote Transcript

Yesterday Google kicked off this year’s annual developer conference Google I/O 2014 at Moscone Center in San Francisco. We produce here the transcript of the opening keynote of the event…




Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Senior Vice President, Android, Chrome, and Apps, Sundar Pichai.

Sundar Pichai – SVP, Android, Chrome, and Apps, Google

Thank you, everyone. It’s great to see all of you. Welcome to Google I/O. Every year, we look forward to this date. We’ve been hard at work since last I/O evolving our platforms so that developers like you can build amazing experiences. So thank you for joining us in person.

I/O is a pretty global event. We have viewing parties in over 597 locations in 85 countries, in six continents. And there are over one million people watching this on the live stream today. Let’s say hello to a few locations.

London. Hello, London.

Let’s say hello to Brazil. Everyone is talking about Brazil today. So if it weren’t for I/O, I would be there for the World Cup. I’m tempted to shout “goal!”

Finally, let’s go to Nigeria, where we are thrilled to have an all-female developer group in Nigeria. We are working hard to elevate women in computer science. So look forward to seeing what they develop one day. In fact, at I/O this year, we are very excited there is over 20% female participation, which is up from 8% last year.

And even more excited, we are joined by over 1,000 women in this room today. So thank you.

Of course, I/O is when we talk about our two large computing platforms, open platforms, Android and Chrome, which are built from the groundup for developers like you. Today, we are going to give you an update on the momentum we are seeing in mobile. We are living in amazing times. So we want to talk about the mobile momentum we see and how we are evolving our platforms to support that momentum. And more importantly, we are beginning to think and evolve our platforms beyond mobile. You will hear about that from us today.

And, finally, we want to talk to you as developers as to how you can achieve success on top of our platforms, including an update on Google Cloud platform and Google Play. So let’s get started.

If you look at global smartphone shipments, the numbers are stunning. The industry shipped over 300 million phones last quarter, so they’re on track to ship well over a billion phones each year.

So how is Android doing in the face of this momentum? So in the past, we have talked about cumulative activations of Android. We are switching and focusing on 30-day-active users, users who are currently using their Android devices globally. And you can see the number has been doubling every year. We have gone from 220 million to over 530 million as of last year’s I/O. We are very excited as of this year’s I/O, we are over one billion 30-day-actives users.

The robot is pretty happy as well. So let’s internalize what one billion users actually mean. Android users on a given day sent over 20 billion text messages each and every day. More importantly, perhaps, they take around 93 million selfies every day. The team tells me about 31 million of these are duck faces. We estimate Android users take around 1.5 trillion steps per day, and they pull out their phones and check it over 100 billion times each day. Important use cases which we are working on addressing and you’ll hear about it later today.

Developers are building profound experiences on top of smartphones. Stories we hear every day. A few examples. In Kenya, 40% of Kenya’s GDP flows through M-PESA, giving unbanked people access to financial transactions throughout the country. NETRA-G, a company uses a smartphone and just off the shelf accessories to measure your eye prescription. And they are as accurate as $50,000 equipment you find in optometrist offices, providing very, very affording care to many people.

And finally, University of Michigan, they are using for their patients, they monitor subtle changes in voice quality using their smartphone to detect early signs of bipolar disorder. So the kind of experiences we are seeing on top of these phones are amazing.

So far, I’ve been talking about phones. Let’s shift to Tablets.


We are seeing amazing growth in Android Tablets as well. So there is tremendous adoption of these devices. And if you look at how we are doing vis-à-vis the overall market, Android Tablets accounted for 39% of all shipments two years ago. That number increased to 46% as of last year’s I/O.

As of this year’s I/O, Android Tablets account for 62% of the overall market. We don’t include other variants of Android like Kindle. If you add that, it would go up a few percentage points. You know, these are shipment numbers. Again, we care about usage, so we view these as leading indicators of where usage would be.

If you take a look at tablet usage, we’re going to use YouTube as a way — as a proxy to understand usage. A year ago, the total tablet viewership of YouTube, 28% was from Android. That number has gone up, again, to 42%. So we are seeing usage track shipments, and we are very excited people are adopting these devices as well.

Another metric of engagement is app installs. App installs just this year alone on tablet is up by over 200%. So people are really engaging with these devices.

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So we are very excited we have a billion users. But we talked about this at last year’s I/O. Our goal is to reach the next five billion people in the world. If you look at a map of the world today, all the regions in blue, emerging markets, majority of users don’t have a smartphone.

When I go back home to India and other countries like that — thank you — it is exciting to see the impact phones have on people’s lives. But it’s disappointing that only less than 10% of the population have access to smartphones. We want to change that. So we’ve been working hard with our ecosystem for — on a very important initiative which we call Android One.

So let me talk to you about Android One.

Android One

what we are doing for the first time, if you look at all the OEMs in these countries, each of them has to reinvent the wheel, and in the fast-paced mobile industry, they have to build a new smartphone within nine months. So we want to pool resources and help everyone. So we are working on a set of hardware reference platforms. We identify the components which go into a next-generation smartphone. These are high-quality, affordable smartphones. We qualify vendors so that we provide a turnkey solution for OEMs to more easily build a smartphone.

In addition to hardware, we are working on software as well. So the software on Android One is the same software you see running on Stock Android, Nexus phones and Google Play edition phones. In addition, through Play, we allow OEMs and carriers to add locally-relevant applications on the device which users have full control over.

And finally, we provide full automatic updates, all the software in Android One comes from Google , so we will keep them updated, just like we do with Nexus and Google Play edition phones.

Let’s take a look at one example device which we are working on.

so this is a device with Micromax. You can see it has a 4.5-inch screen. It has features which matters to a country like India, Dual Sim. Removable SD cards, and FM radio. I’m used to cutting-edge phones, and I’ve been using this phone for a while. And it is really good. And it costs less than $100.

We are working with many partners, we are going to be launching this around the world. But we start this journey in India. And we are launching this with three OEMs in India in the fall of this year: Micromax, Karbonn, and Spice. We are also working with carriers in these markets to provide affordable connectivity packages with these devices.

What we are excited is this is a leveraged turnkey solution so that at scale, we can bring high-quality, affordable smartphones so that we can get the next billion people access to these devices. And we can’t wait to see the impact that it would have.

So we have talked about the momentum in mobile. The next thing we want to talk to you is about how we are evolving our platforms, Android and Chrome. And today, for the first time since we launched Android with Open SDK, we are going to give you a preview of the upcoming “L” release. You will be able to download this later on your development devices. We’ve been working very hard. This is one of the most comprehensive releases we have done. It has over 5,000 new APIs, and we are thinking about “L” release not just for mobile, but for form factors beyond mobile.

One of the things, as we thought about “L,” we wanted to take a radical new approach to design. User experiences are evolving rapidly, and we wanted to rethink the user design experience in Android to have a fresh, bold, and new look.

To talk about the design for “L,” let me invite Matias Duarte.

Matias Duarte – VP of Design, Google

Thank you, Sundar. Design is essential in today’s world. It defines your experiences and your emotions. So we challenged ourselves to create a design that was not just for Android phones and tablets. We worked together — Android, Chrome, and across all of Google — to craft one consistent vision for mobile, desktop, and beyond. We wanted a design that was clear and simple and that people would intuitively understand.

Philosophy of Material Design

So we imagined, what if pixels didn’t just have color, but also depth? What if there was an intelligent material that was as simple as paper but could transform and change shape in response to touch? And this led us to a way of thinking that we call material design.

[Video Presentation]

We drew inspiration from paper and ink. However, unlike real paper, our digital material can expand, reform and reshape intelligently. Material has physical surfaces and edges because the human mind is wired at its most primitive level to instinctively understand objects and their relationships. These scenes and shadows provide meaning about what you can touch and how it will move.

In the real world every small change in position and depth creates subtle, but important changes in lighting and shadows. So as part of the “L” preview, we’ll now allow app developers to specify an elevation value for any UI surface and the framework will render it in correct perspective with virtual light sources and real-time shadows.

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Material design is beautiful and bold because clean typographic layouts are simple and easy to understand. Your content is the focus. So the “L” preview will allow app developers to easily colorize all framework elements in your app to match the theme to your brand and we’re previewing a new support library that we call palette to easily extract colors from images and really put those vivid pictures front and center.

We’re giving designers familiar tools like baseline grids that work across screens, grids ensure apps have a consistent rhythm and character and this will allow you to start with a design on a phone and logically and easily bring that same design to tablets and laptops.

Now one design doesn’t mean one size fits all. Our guidelines allow you to appropriately adapt the UI, so your users will already know their way around your app no matter what screen they use it on.

And we’ve also updated our system font Roboto so that designers and developers can use one type face, designed and optimized for every screen from your watch to your laptop to your television.


So now let’s talk about Animation. It’s delightful when your touch is rewarded with motion and material surfaces slide around with the physics of card stock, but they respond to touch with splashes of virtual link that are like ripples in a pond.

As part of the “L” preview, all of your applications UI building blocks have been updated to include rich, animated touch feedback. And no detail is too small to bring a smile to your face like when the reload button loops around or the playback controls can change.

Finally, in the real world, nothing teleports from one place to another and that’s why it’s so important to animate every change on screen in a way that makes sense. In the “L” preview, Android developers will now be able to create seamless animations from any screen to any other between activities and even between apps.

So you’re probably wondering how this looks like in practice. We’re going to give you a sneak peek at one of our familiar Google applications in the new material design.

Here you can see step by step how we update the design. The typography, the grid changes, and finally the surfaces and bold colors.

And a few small changes make a really big difference. And you can also see how easy it is to take a same design to different screens. Now, I’ve talked about only a few of the highlights of material design and just some of the APIs that you can try out in the Android “L” preview.

But as you know, people spend an enormous amount of time on the web and especially the mobile web. Last year at I/O, we announced Polymer, which is a powerful new UI library for the web. Today we’re bringing you all of the material design capabilities to the web through Polymer. As a web developer, you will be able to build applications out of material design building blocks with all of the same surfaces, bold graphics and smooth animations at 60 frames per second.

So between the “L” preview and Polymer, you can bring the same rich, fluid material design to every screen. And to help you take full advantage of this framework, we’ve also completely redesigned and created one unified set of style guidelines for every screen and for all devices. These guidelines will help designers and developers alike understand best practices and build consistent, beautiful experiences.

We’re releasing the first draft of these guidelines as part of our preview today at

Now that you’ve seen our new look and feel, I’d like to invite Dave Burke to show you some of the new features in the Android “L” developer preview.

Dave Burke – Director of Engineering, Android

All right. So over the last eight months, our team has been busy cooking up the biggest release in the history of Android. And as Sundar mentioned, we’ve added over 5,000 new APIs touching nearly every aspect of the system.

Now we don’t have time to even come close to covering everything in “L” today. So instead, what I like to do is walk you through some of the highlights of the tremendous steps we’re taking on the user experience and on the performance of the Android platform.

so let’s start with user experience. Now, bringing material to “L” is of course a big part of what we’re trying to do here. We’ve added a new material theme, so it’s a new style for your application that includes new system widgets, transition animations and animated touch feedback.

We’ve also added new animation support, so a new drawable for animated ripples, a reveal animator to animate a clipping circle to reveal views and we’ve extended views to not just have an X and Y component, but also a Z component to provide elevation. So you can float elements of your UI and the framework will cast a real-time shadow for you.

My favorite feature that we’ve added in support material is the ability to customize activity, entry and exit animations. You can even include [share here] elements. For example, an image that starts in one activity and animates seamlessly through translation and scaling into another.

So let’s take a look at this in practice. Let’s have a look at now, we’re all familiar with, which is the phone dialer. Thanks, Marcelo.

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