During his first ever keynote address at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow, Google CEO Eric Schmidt announced that more of his company’s focus is now on smartphones than on desktops. He summed this up with a new motto: “Mobile First”.
With this rule, Google developers are now creating versions of new services for smartphones before creating ones to run on PCs.
It’s the Cloud, Stupid
Schmidt went on to talk about the importance of cloud computing, in which applications and data are handled by the Internet. “If you don’t use the power of the cloud you will fail,” said Schmidt.
Google has been a leading proponent of the move to this method of computing. Its Android operating system for smartphones depends heavily on always-on, high-speed Wireless Data connections, as many of its more advanced features are handled in the cloud, such as speech recognition.
This company is working on new services, as well. One of these was demonstrated during this MWC keynote address — an optical character recognition (OCR) app that will allow the user to take a picture of text written in one language and then translate it into another.
The Coming of Flash
But not everything will be cloud-based. Senior Product Manager for Android at Google Eric Tseng promised during this event that Adobe Flash will soon be coming to the Android OS. Adobe has promised that the necessary plug-ins will be available to the public in the first half of this year.
This multimedia technology is is frequently used by websites to allow streaming video and very graphical user interfaces. It’s widely used on PCs, but is only now coming to smartphones.
Android OS Going Like Gangbusters
The Android OS launched in late 2008 with one device on one carrier. A bit more than a year later, it is now available on 26 models in 48 countries, and Schmidt says that about 60,000 smartphones running this operating system are now being sold each day.