Good Things at Google I/O 2024

By Jonathan Baker and Michael DiMarco, SEO Manager at EGC

The annual Google I/O conference took place earlier this week, where everything from upgraded features to brand new launches were previewed and met with enthusiastic responses. This year, most of the emphasis revolved around the new evolving AI advancements powered by Google’s Gemini.

From 2023 to 2024

Last year’s annual Google I/O conference promoted additions to Vertex AI and the introduction of a chatbot, among other innovations. Many may have left thinking this would be a tough act to follow. For the 2024 conference, Google did not disappoint. This year may be thought of as “the age of Gemini.”

Google and Gemini 1.5 Flash

Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, came right to the point: “Google is fully in our Gemini era.”

There was high anticipation about the upgrade from Gemini 1.5 Pro to Gemini 1.5 Flash. The main difference (read: improvement), as observed in The Verge, is that 1.5 Flash will take on “narrow, high-frequency, low-latency tasks”—resulting in faster responses. Additionally, 1.5 Flash will be able to take in double the amount of information than it could in 1.5 Pro.

Additional enhancements and inventions announced at Google I/O 2024 include:

• Ask Photos

Coming to Google this summer, “Ask Photos” will help users go through and organize collections of images stored in their Google Photos libraries. The real perk is that users can actually ask questions related to their libraries, followed by an answer from Gemini. If there is a relevant image Google can automatically pull it up to share.

• Workspace upgrade

Paid subscribers who use Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drives, and Gmail will soon have Gemini 1.5 Pro at their disposal to serve as an AI assistant that can quickly find and retrieve content from their Drives and write emails based on existing content, among other tasks.

• Project Astra

A most ambitious prospect from Google, this is a multimodal AI assistant that will have the capacity to not only view but understand—and remember—what users are looking at through the camera of their devices. Project Astra is able to identify and list everything that a phone camera can see. Google’s demonstration showed Project Astra recognizing and explaining the individual parts of a 2D drawing of a Formula One race car during a live video. Additionally, this innovation was able to memorize a sequence of objects and recite them—even after the camera had moved away from them.

• Veo

Imagine being able to generate video content that is based on text, images, or original video—at 1080p. This video content may also be produced in any kind of style, such as time lapses and aerial shots. Veo will turn this imagining into reality. And while on the topic of Veo…

• SynthID AI watermarking

Google’s SynthID—a watermarking tool to identify AI-generated videos—will be extended to include content that is created by the Veo video generator.

• Gems

Staying on top of the popularity of chatbot usage, Google has created Gems. This is a creator of custom chatbots that enables users to instruct Gemini as to how responses should be formed in answers to questions that are entered. Chatbots can be designed, for example, as personal fitness instructors that can help set workout routines and schedules, or as a coding partner and creative writing guide, among other options. This feature, which is “coming soon,” is reserved for Gemini Advanced subscribers.

• Gemini Live

Gemini Live seeks to make what may have been awkward “conversations” between users and their devices feel more natural and comfortable. This feature will also be able to offer info on what it “sees” through a smartphone camera as well as gather content from Google Calendar, Tasks, and Keep.

• AI Overviews

The formerly named “Search Generative Experience” on Google is being changed to “AI Overviews.” This will include an overhaul through a Gemini model which designs and populates results pages accompanied by summaries from the Internet. AI Overviews help take the legwork out of searching by providing answers and results for complex queries using multi-step reasoning. Google provided specific examples of how AI Overviews can help create tasks that include multi-day meal plans for a specific diet, designing how-to features, finding local businesses, or brainstorming to receive inspiration.

These coming attractions from Google are indeed impressive.
(And many are probably wondering what next year’s I/O conference will be like.)

The EGC Group continues to watch the latest developments from Google. Is your brand or business appearing where you would like in Google Search? If you think your ranking could be improved, get in touch to find out how we can help.