Developing a secure, automotive-grade platform hasn't been easy for Google. Launched ahead of Google I/O 2018, the new gadget is created to plug into a TV and bring all of Google's media streaming and voice control technologies in one fell swoop.
The design of the iPhone X is such that there is no room left for the home button that has been synonymous with iPhones thus far. In March, Google added Shopping Actions that allow customers to shop with a universal cart even when shopping by voice on a Google Home device (its answer to Amazon's Alexa devices).
Machine learning is today's watchword, and Google states, "Our systems will evaluate all available signals and use machine learning to predict the likelihood of a search query to convert so you can make the most of your budget across networks, products, and audiences". It will also ship with a remote control, that can interact with older TV's via the built-in IR functionality. Previous year at I/O, we saw Android Automotive's debut, a phone-less version of Android Auto for specific cars, and now, we're getting more details on that, as well as a slight revamp for Android Auto itself.
Google wants Android to power everything, and in December 2016, it released a new operating system to help - Android Things.
Google's home theater strategy might finally be starting to come together.
Along with its audio capabilities, Link Bar is also an Android TV streamer, with voice-controlled HDMI switching and hands-free searching across all supported apps and services.
The Play platform should see some modest gains this year starting with Google News. This year both Microsoft and Google are having their respective events on the same dates which means more developer content from both the companies.
This has mostly to do with developers, but it should have some interesting reverberations on Android apps.