Google will reveal the next blockbuster update coming to YOUR Android phone tonight

google io promotional image in the background with a pixel 8a phone pictured in the foreground

Android fans should clear their diaries at 6pm BST on May 14 to find out about the latest features coming in a free update to their smartphones later this year

Aaron Brown

By Aaron Brown

Published: 14/05/2024

- 09:00

Updated: 14/05/2024

- 09:00

Android 15 is tipped to be one of the biggest announcements from Google I/O

  • Google I/O developer conference starts this evening at 6pm BST
  • Keynote will confirm updates for Android, Google Chrome, Google Maps, more
  • Android 15 will be a free update for Pixel, Samsung, OnePlus, Nokia smartphones
  • However, the release date will depend on the manufacturer of your device
  • Google is expected to reveal improvements to Gemini, which rivals ChatGPT
  • CEO Sundar Pichai has previously had to apologise for its AI inaccuracies

Google will kickstart its annual developer conference tonight (May 14) at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California — a stone's throw from Google's headquarters. Known as Google I/O, the event is designed to be an opportunity for developers to hear about the latest incoming technology, so they can update and adjust their websites, apps, and services accordingly.

It's also an unparalleled chance for Android phone owners to glimpse the new features coming in the next major operating system update. This time around, we're expecting to hear a lot about Android 15.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai pictured on-stage at the 2023 Google I/O developer conference

Google CEO Sundar Pichai pictured at the 2023 Google I/O developer conference, hosted at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California, USA


Google has already rolled out an early beta version of Android 15, which introduced the ability to pick between sharing their entire screen or just one app window for additional privacy during a video call. It also added new camera controls, enhanced satellite connectivity, and a power efficiency mode to extend battery life.

But whispers suggest that there's much more to Android 15 than this handful of new additions, and we're likely to hear about the flagship features during the opening keynote presentation at Google I/O.

Sources speaking to Android Authority claim Google will announce widgets that can be placed on the lockscreen of your tablet — something that was removed from Android back in 2014.

Although Google was an early pioneer of widgets, it started to phase out these interactive panels with the arrival of Android 5. The implementation of widgets on iPhone and iPad in recent years could be the reason behind this rumoured U-turn.

Widgets will let you glance at your upcoming calendar appointments, timezones from around the world, and battery levels for your device and any connected accessories, like wireless earbuds and styluses.

Elsewhere, rumours point to a redesigned status bar at the top of the screen, improved battery health monitoring, and satellite messaging to mirror the Emergency Text via Satellite feature available on iPhone.

Android 15 could also let you take advantage of the high-quality camera array built into modern smartphones to improve the quality of video calls. Dubbed High-Quality Webcam mode, you'll be able to use your phone to improve calls from an older laptop or desktop set-up without a dedicated webcam.

Some tipsters have suggested that Google will allow third-party assistants, like Amazon's Alexa and ChatGPT from OpenAI, to be tightly integrated into Android with this next release. Although both of these competitors to the Google Assistant are already available to download from the Play Store, neither can be used hands-free.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) features will be rolled-out across the operating system, sources claim. Google will leverages its AI models to make suggestions for restaurants, shopping, or nearby EV chargers when plotting a drive in Google Maps. Google is also testing the ability to ask AI to call a business and wait on hold for you — passing on the call to you when a human being available to talk.

Android 15 will be available on millions of smartphones and tablets worldwide. However, it won't be rolled-out to all of these devices at the same time. Google's own Pixel line-up of smartphones is first to receive the latest blockbuster update from the Californian company, with the Pixel 6a, Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro or newer eligible for the step-up to Android 15 when the release date arrives.

Manufacturers like Samsung, Nothing, OnePlus, Nokia, HMD Global, Xiaomi, and Sony take a little longer to bring the latest operating system features announced by Google to their portfolio. That's because many of these brands overlay their own functionality that isn't available in the stock version of Android shipped by Google, or custom the appearance of the operating system with a stylised look, or sometimes, both of the above.

Implementing these changes and beta testing takes time. Most of these phones usually enjoy the latest features announced at Google I/O within a year of the release of the new version of Android.


screenshots of the google gemini AI system on a phone and a desktop PC

Google's Gemini is a suite of Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems, including generative image creation and written answers from a short text prompt — like what you'd expect from rival ChatGPT


Aside from its popular mobile operating system, which powers some 3.6 billion devices worldwide, Google is widely tipped to use the latest I/O developer conference to announce changes to Google Gemini. This advanced AI is the US search firm's solution to ChatGPT and Microsoft Copilot.

Google is believed to be working on shrinking the vast model that powers Gemini, so that it can be installed directly onto the chipset inside your phone — cutting the need to connect to the internet to answer every query.

That'll save you some mobile data allowance, but also means you'll be able to rely on the AI to summarise news articles, organise your notes, rephrase emails and text messages, and more when you don't have an internet connection — handy for commutes on subway trains or flights.

Google is also likely to provide an update on its plans to fuse its search engine with Gemini generative AI, so that it'll offer complete answers instead of a list of links from across the web. Google exec Sundar Pichai has already been forced to apologise for Gemini due to inaccurate results, an error that it'll be keen not to replicate.

GB News will bring you all of the announcements from Google I/O. The opening keynote begins at 6pm BST (10am PDT / 1pm EDT) on Tuesday May 14, 2024. You can watch the event live on the Google I/O website on YouTube, or in the feed embedded above. Stay tuned.

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