The next May 11 begins the Google I/O 2022, the most important event of the year for the entire Android ecosystem. The opening talk will be the one that brings together the big Google announcements, and although this is a conference primarily for developersimportant developments are expected in the field of hardware.
It is evident that Android 13 will be the great protagonist of the event and of those days: the next version of this operating system will raise its big bets for the coming months, but as we say, those announcements may be overshadowed by two highly anticipated devices: the Pixel 6a and the almost mythical Pixel Watch.
It already smells like tiramisu
This year we could have a version of Android somewhat less important in news than in previous editions. The reason is that the big changes in the interface we already saw last year with that design language called Material You. Not only that: after Android 12 Google recently presented Android 12L for tablets and foldables.
Although Android 12L is a very different version of Android 12, it is possible that the work on said variant makes the imminent android 13 —codenamed ‘tiramisu’— not be so remarkable for its novelties. Not at least in the section of a visual experience that in fact is taking time to reach many devices.
That does not mean that there will not be interesting milestones: our companions of Xataka Android already tried the preliminary version for developers, highlighting for example the new permission management to access storage which will force applications to ask permission to send notifications.
There is also talk of the potential Android Beam return for transfer files between devices wirelessly, or from a direct QR code scanning system from the lock screen.
Google Pixel 6a
That somewhat less promising version of Android in terms of the magnitude of the changes seems to leave the way clear so that this time the protagonist of the inaugural event is not in fact the software, but the hardware.
This is where two devices come in that have been talked about a lot in recent months. The first is the Google Pixel 6athe most affordable version of the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro that Google introduced in October.
This smartphone will have more modest specifications, but we all hope that the sacrifices will not be made in the cameras, which in theory they would be the same as those of the Pixel 6.
We could even have the same Tensor chip, so the cuts are expected on the screen and in sections such as the refresh rate, which could stay at 60hz compared to 90 and 120 Hz that we find in the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro respectively.
Pixel Watch (and Wear OS 3.1)
We have been talking about how Google had neglected the segment of smart watches. It seems that this event will be important in that sense, and we may have notable news in both hardware and software.
For a start, Everything indicates that we will finally see the Pixel Watchthat smart watch made by Google that has been expected for a long time and that will do in this market what the Pixels have done in the field of smartphones: try to set a benchmark and a path for the rest of the manufacturers.
The rumors have been accumulating the last weeksbut also someone left abandoned in a bar a model of this smartwatch and it seems clear that the launch is imminent. There are not many details about its hardware – it seems that it will have a 300 mAh battery and up to 32 GB of capacity, quite a surprise – but we do know something about its software.
In fact, this Pixel Watch will mark the debut of Wear OS 3.1which will theoretically go even further than that joint work from Samsung and Google that the company announced in the past Google I/O. There will probably be a clear focus on health and it is even expected that an electrocardiogram function will be integrated. The price could be elevated and around 400 euros.
At this Google I/O, however, we may only attend a brief presentation: according to According to analyst Jon Prosser, the Pixel Watch will actually be announced in October alongside the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro.
Nest Hub and Pixel Fold on the horizon (or not)
There is also talk of two more options as surprises of the day, although these are more unlikely. The first, a Nest Hub with a detachable screen that we can use as a tablet with Android 13.
The second, that folding mobile called Pixel Fold that has also been talked about for a long time and that would make good use of Android 12L, the operating system that is precisely geared towards folding. The latest news seems to make it clear that Google has abandoned the project.
Neither of those two options are safe, but we do expect Google to talk a lot about Android 13, of the Pixel 6a and (at least a little) the Pixel Watch.
In a few days we will confirm these forecasts: in Xataka we will be covering in detail that inaugural conference that will take place on next May 11 at 19:00 CEST.
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Everything we expect from Google I/O 2022: Android 13, but above all a Pixel 6a and a Pixel Watch
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