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May 10, 2011

Google IO 2011 - Android rally, App Engine 1.5, Music Beta and more

At Google I/O 2011, the Android team shared some updates.

There are now:

* 100 million activated Android devices
* 400,000 new Android devices activated every day
* 200,000 free and paid applications available in Android Market
* 4.5 billion applications installed from Android Market

Android 3.1 update (new version of Android called Ice Cream Sandwich) to the Honeycomb tablet OS adds the ability to make an Android device a USB host.

Android 3.1's interface includes features such as a new scrolling list of apps for switching among them and resizable widgets. Existing widgets can be updated with new XML code to give them the new resizing abilities.

Google has launched Music Beta by Google, a new service that lets you upload your personal music collection to the cloud for streaming to your computer and Android devices



Google announced version 1.5 of Google App Engine and discussed its plans to graduate the platform out of preview status to enterprise-grade quality.

App Engine 1.5.0 will have new features such as
* Backends
* improvements to Task Queues
* support for the Google Go programming language, among other new things.

Google also said App Engine will graduate out of its current Preview status in the second half of 2011.

D’Alesandre said with Backends -- for both Python and Java -- App Engine can now support applications classes of applications such as report generation apps and custom search engines to be hosted on the platform. And improvements to Task Queues allow for applications to control how tasks are executed and easily share the work using the new REST-based APIs. “This API access expands App Engine’s compatibility with other on-premise and cloud services, furthering our commitment to an open development platform,” D’Alesandre said.

Moreover, with the experimental runtime for the Go Programming Language, Google is making an App Engine SDK for Go available for download. “And we will soon enable deployment of Go apps into the App Engine infrastructure,” D’Alesandre said.

Go is an open source, statically typed, compiled language with a dynamic and lightweight feel. “It’s also an interesting new option for App Engine because Go apps will be compiled to native code, making Go a good choice for more CPU-intensive tasks,” D’Alesandre said. “As of today, the If you’re interested in starting early, sign up to be first through the door when we open it up to early testers. If you’d like to learn more, read it about it on the Go Blog.”

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