At Google I/O 2021, the company showed off several cool functions that allow its products to work better together.
Chromebooks and Android get a little closer
There’s a new way to share photos quickly between Android smartphones and Chromebooks. Google is going to add recently taken photos from your phone to the new Phone Hub feature on Chrome OS. The Phone Hub was added to Chrome OS in March of 2021 and you can read more about it here, but the ghist of it is that it gives you some more control over your phone even when it’s not in the room.
New TV remote built into Android
Another new cool feature allows people with Google TV and Android TV devices to use their smartphones as a remote. This is similar to how iOS can be used as a remote for the Apple TV and AirPlay-enabled screens. Overall the remote looks easy to use and allows you to type in passwords for your smart TV apps.
android Fast Pair tech coming to cars and more
Android Fast Pair is a process that makes pairing headphones and devices to your phone pretty streamlined. To help make it more useful Google is adding cars from Ford and BMW to the mix plus Apple-owned Beats headphones.
Digital car keys
Digital car keys are also coming to Android, allowing more people to use NFC tech to open their cars or to start them remotely. Google says that through the use of Ultra-Wideband tech, the same secret sauce in the AirTag, users won’t even need to take their phone out of their pocket to unlock their car.
If your Car has an NFC-enabled door lock system users will be able to tap their phones to the lock point on the car to unlock it. there’s no mention if the phone needs to be unlocked first or if this will just work whenever. One of the cooler features of digital keys is that it allows you to share versions of your key with friends wirelessly.
Google says this feature is coming to Pixel and Samsung Galaxy phones later this year. The only cars that work with this are some upcoming BMW vehicles.
Image credit: Google