I wrote this post mainly because of my feeling regarding Google I/O 2018, but also as a very long answer for a friend of mine, Aengeln. Check him out and wait for his response to this post!
Google I/O for 2018 was yesterday. It was, even this year, boring as hell. Last year I missed it, but I watched it a little bit afterwards and I saw the videos from The Verge etc that talked about the new stuff. Even then I was not amazed. The I/O of 2016 was the year of the gazillion messaging apps that Google released and ever since then I’ve slowly stopped liking Google. I’m still a fan, but it has really started to dwindle since then. Now it is all about AI and Machine Learning(ML), and that’s boring. I’d rather see a bug free range of Google Products and bring back Google Reader or something?! If you’ve read my last posts, follow this blog etc. You already know how and where I stand regarding all about this and I know I’ve talked way to much about Apple and their expensive stuff, so I shall try to not mention them in this post excessively. Ok, so here we go.
Auto completing e-mails in Gmail?!
The first issue with yesterday’s Google I/O was the self writing email stuff within Gmail that’s apparently a new feature. Immediately I felt like that was not something I’m interested in. I hope you can opt out from it. My BF even said that if Google is gonna dig into your mail even further it might be time to look for another mail service. We both love Gmail, but I agree. That did not feel good. I’ve actually created an account with ProtonMail, the service seen in the TV show, Mr Robot. I don’t know if it’s any good, but perhaps I’ll look into another service that might offer more, but I don’t know.
The Google Assistant makes creepy calls in the background?!
The other thing that made me wanna get out of my own skin was the news with the Google Assistant (GA). Now, at first I do like the Google Assistant but I basically never use it. I used it a lot in the beginning to make calls etc, but these days I might use it 5 times a year or something like that. I’ve even turned off the assistant from time to time, so it’s not really something I care about. When they announced that the GA could make calls for you in a very realistic way I got so creeped out that I did not know what to do with myself. I said “I call bullshit” and then I ran to the toilet. I had to pee, so that’s why.
If this is purely done by a “robot”, it’s way to creepy for me to even begin using. It has to be normal people who are calling, but even if that was true – imagine the costs for that service?! Way too expensive… To sum it up. Me Do Not Like. I welcome the more natural voices though, and the additional voices as well, but who the fudge is John Legend? It seemed that the audience didn’t know either.
Android is ruined…
First, I gotta say that there were one or two things I liked when they talked about Android. The things I can remember was the landscape lock thing and the other one is that the Android P beta is available to more phones from the start. Instead of the phone automatically switching to landscape if I put my phone that way (when not watching a video), it could really be useful to push a button instead, because my phone has a huge problem with always switching to landscape if I manage to have my phone turned on its side for like half a second to long. I hate that. It happens probably once a day, and I do not want to lock it to portrait mode, because then all of my photos and videos would be locked in portrait. I have a lousy memory and I’ve forgotten to switch back to unlocked mode. And I hate vertical videos!!!😣
Besides those little things, I felt that Android is really getting ruined. Beside all of the AI and machine learning shit I do not care for, I got a bit “pissed” as well with the new gesture modes. It’s just like the iPhone X FFS! Basically all of this year’s android phones also have notches and I hate it. I am neutral regarding the notch in general, but I hate that every phone with Android is now copying the iPhone X. I understand why phones go in that direction, but I’d like to see more cheap Android phones to blatantly copy the iPhone X instead of all the bigger players as well. Why? Because that makes more sense. There are other ways to make smaller bezels. Just look at the Samsung Galaxy s9 or the OnePlus 5T. The OnePlus 6 will have a notch and if I can afford it, I’ve said I’ll buy it. However, personally a lot have changed lately so I’m probably stuck with my Lenovo P2 for another year or so. More about that in another post. Generally I did not like the Android update and that makes me sad. But it makes me happier that I have an older, crap-cheap phone instead of a brand new one at the moment.
Google Maps becomes more useful, and ML is useful when you talk about self-driving cars.
The stuff about Google Maps was fine. It will now start using your camera for directions and show you the right way. I think that could be a good thing, so I have nothing more to say about that. When Waymo talked about their self-driving cars I got somewhat happy, because that’s when ML is really useful. I don’t have anything else really to say about that either. It’s good.
Conversations about Google being boring and how it’s a “good thing” to be spied upon by huge corporations.
During the whole Keynote, me and the BF had our conversations about how Google is not innovating any longer. I’t just focus on AI, Machine Learning etc. instead of something different and purely new. My BF said at one time that he would be really happy if Google “did an Apple”. Like all of a sudden they presented a real “EyePhone” or something. VR lenses that could fit in your eye with 4k resolution for each eye etc. Something absolutely amazing! Like they did when they showed Google Glass back in the day… My BF also said that he really wished that there were a 4th company or something that had phones with a different OS to offer. He does not want to “sponsor” Google (with Android in mind), iOS or the Windows phone, because “they’re all the same”. Like choosing between the devil and the deep blue sea. I told him that might not be true. With what I’ve learned about Apple during the past 6 months or so, I know they care about Privacy a whole lot more than all the other companies out there, like Google and Microsoft. Or even Facebook for that matter, but they do not make phones or provide Operating Systems. He hates Apple as a company, and he really dislikes iOS, but he knows what I also used to know regarding the stupidness of iOS and I have investigated further and found that iOS is not that bad. Sure, it’s limited, but at what cost? A reliable smartphone experience that typically lasts you for years. Like I mentioned before, iPhone users tend to have their phone last for like 4 years and that is so amazing! Android users? They usually switch phone every year or so. Not to mention the gazillion accessories you can have to express yourself! He uses a Macbook Pro for work, and it works fine. Some things he loves, other he hates. He says that the only reason why he uses it is because Unity is available on both Windows and MacOS, but he also says the laptop is really not worth the price. He prefers Windows clearly over MacOS, and I don’t blame him. I guess I do to, but I do not remember what it’s like to work with MacOS so I really can’t say.
Other articles I’ve read since yesterday (and regarding Apple products) say that if you care about privacy there is only one option. Get an iPhone. Get a Mac for a computer. I found on their website a lot of examples on how they can use ML and AI and still keep the privacy secure for the users of the platform, and I think that’s great. I mean, I have nothing against AI or ML, really, but I don’t like the fact that everything I choose to do will be saved somewhere in the cloud or sold to some ad company. The only thing I want in the cloud are my personal files such as photos and documents. I do not like that my email will be read and completed for me and that everything I’ve watched or researched will “forever haunt me” in my social media when it’s not really relevant. Apple say that they can make a personal experience great without spying on you or sell your information to ad companies. All the information about Face ID is stored locally on the device, and many other ML stuff is also only on the device. Everything as well on your devices are encrypted and I see that as a big difference. Apple does not read my emails and they can’t say that I’m the one who searched for dolphins (as an example) yesterday at 3:04PM in my home in Malmö. Both Google and Facebook can do that, unless I turn a lot of features off and use another anonymous browser. Apple does not spy on you by default. Instead they sell you “great and expensive” hardware. The only thing I do not mind sharing with Google and Facebook is my location and basic contact details. The latter is if they only use it to contact me like send an email if something new has happened with my account that I need to check or to sen 2 step verifications to my phone via SMS. I’d be angry if sales people call me up because they got my number from Google… I guess basically that everything else I’d like to be kept locally or not at all. At least not shared and sold off to ad companies. I also love the fact that I can see in real-time in Google Maps where my BF is, and that he can see me. That way I don’t have to ask him all the time where he is, and that’s a great thing.
Also, to point out – once again about me writing about Apple and their products. This is not a praise to Apple being perfect or some crap like that. I write what I know, what I’ve learned and how I interpret these corporations that everybody basically is involved with these days on a daily basis. I do not hate Google, I do not hate Apple nor have I become an Apple sheep/fanboy etc. I just call it like I see it. And I do not like where Google is going with their AI business.
Not one bit.