4 Cool Things From the Google I/O Conference

by Tom Taulli | June 29, 2012 12:35 pm

[1]The implosion[2] of Research in Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM[3]) shows what happens when a tech company fails to innovate.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG[4]) is trying to avoid this trap. And yes, the company seems to be doing just fine on that score, as seen at this week’s I/O developers’ conference.

It was a geekfest. Each attendee got $1.167 worth of gadgets[5], including the Nexus 7 tablet, Nexus Q, Galaxy Nexus phone and the Chromebox. That should be enough to keep a developer busy, right?

Now let’s take a look at the standout announcements at the conference:

Nexus 7 Tablet

The device has a seven-inch screen, an HD screen and a front-facing camera. Oh, and the price tag is only $199. In other words, the Nexus 7 is a direct shot at Amazon.com’s (NASDAQ:AMZN[6]) Kindle Fire.

Despite this, Google will still face some challenges. For one thing, the content available for the Nexus 7 is fairly meager.

Chrome Browser

Google’s browser is No. 1 in market share, beating out Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT[7]) Internet Explorer. Chrome has more than 310 million users.

To keep up the momentum, Google has updated Chrome to be able to integrate voice recognition into apps. This should be critical as mobile traffic continues to surge. And Google has launched versions of Chrome for Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL[8]) iPhone and iPad, which should give the user base a nice boost.

The Cloud

This has been a big business for Amazon.com and Rackspace (NYSE:RAX[9]). Now Google wants to get a piece of the action.

The new service is called the Google Compute Engine. Essentially, it’s a platform that allows third parties to build and operate their applications. No doubt, Google has the benefit of a massive global network of data centers.

Project Glass

This is a major effort from Google co-founder Sergey Brin. He thinks millions of people will eventually wear Internet-powered eyeglasses.

Google’s version has special lenses that project maps, text and images. You can also navigate via a voice-activation system.

It seems kind of wacky, but so do many other breakthrough technologies when they’re first introduced. I think  I’ll wait until Google comes out with the bionic eye — à la the Six Million Dollar Man.

Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPO Playbook, a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He is also the author of the upcoming book How to Create the Next Facebook: Seeing Your Startup Through, from Idea to IPO[10].  Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli[11] or reach him via email[12]. As of this writing, he did not own a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

  1. [Image]: https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/GooglePromo.jpg
  2. implosion: https://investorplace.com/2012/06/research-in-motion-completely-implodes/
  3. RIMM: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=RIMM
  4. GOOG: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=GOOG
  5. $1.167 worth of gadgets: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57463195-93/google-i-o-giveaways-%245.5-million-buys-a-lot-of-buzz/
  6. AMZN: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=AMZN
  7. MSFT: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=MSFT
  8. AAPL: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=AAPL
  9. RAX: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=RAX
  10. How to Create the Next Facebook: Seeing Your Startup Through, from Idea to IPO: http://goo.gl/RVJL9
  11. @ttaulli: https://twitter.com/ttaulli
  12. email: mailto:tom@taulli.com

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