Google looks set to announce a glut of shiny new hardware today at its annual developer conference, known as Google IO and sometimes stylised as Google I/O.
The event, which enables the Mountain View-based company to showcase unfinished versions of its latest software to developers ahead of launch, will also play host to some new hardware announcements this year.
Based on the latest whispers, Google could unveil a new version of its popular Google Home smart speaker, a first-party Pixel smartwatch, and a more affordable twist on its flagship Pixel 3 smartphone range, known as Google Pixel 3a.
You can watch today's keynote with CEO Sundar Pichar from 6pm BST, 1pm EDT, and 10am PT in the player below.
According to the latest rumours, Pixel 3a will boast many of the same features already offered on Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL albeit with a slightly more affordable price tag. Google is expected to fit the handset with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 chipset, coupled with 4GB of RAM, and 32GB of storage. Unlike the all-glass case of the Pixel 3, the more affordable model will use plastic to cut costs, so you can kiss goodbye to the idea of using the awesome Pixel Stand accessory Google unveiled las year.
The first non-premium smartphone model to launch in the Pixel range is expected to cost around £749 – the price of the iPhone XR – or slightly less, like the Galaxy S10e, which is a similar almost-flagship proposition for the Galaxy S smartphone range.
In terms of design, the Google Pixel 3 Lite looks to be much closer to the Pixel 3 than the Pixel 3 XL. It uses the same curved bezels around the display, instead of the chunky notch that appeared on the Pixel 3 XL and was publicly mocked by Samsung.
Pixel 3a purportedly has the same 5.5-inch screen size as the Pixel 3, but will carry a lower resolution 2,220 x 1,080 IPS panel compared to the FHD+ OLED on the latter. Meanwhile, the Pixel 3a XL will have a slightly larger 6-inch display. It will also favour a IPS LCD panel as a likely cost-cutting measure rather than pricier OLED.
Google I/O could also see a second-generation Google Home smart speaker unveiled on-stage by Google executives. Android Police believes Google will launch a new Google Home Hub smart display with a larger screen – potentially closer to the 10-inch display seen on the rival Amazon Echo Show, compared to the 7-inch panel on the current model.
Elsewhere, the unconfirmed report mentions “an updated version” of the Google Home. Unfortunately, there's no additional details around what these updates could entail, but it seems likely that we'll a new smart speaker from Google. After all, the search company has announced a new Google Home every year since 2016.
Tipster Evan Blass, better known via his Twitter handle @evleaks, predicted that Google would finally launch its long-awaited Pixel Watch smartwatch during its Made By Google event in October 2018. However, it failed to materialise during the launch.
Besides the Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, and second-gen Pixel Buds, a reliable source tells me -- with high confidence -- that Google's fall hardware event will also introduce a Pixel-branded watch. Have a great summer!May 10, 2018
According to blog 9to5Google, the smartwatch was planned for the October 2018 event, but had to be delayed at the last minute. It's unclear when the Pixel Watch will be ready to launch, but a Google I/O seems like the next major hardware event.
As always, it's worth taking the above rumours with a healthy pinch of salt. We'll keep you updated with all of the latest whispers when we hear of them.