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Google Drive redesigned, Chrome and WearOS updated as well

Google Chrome gets integration for AR and VR experiences, while WeaOS gets an enhanced battery saving mode.

Attendees wait in line to attend a session during the annual Google I/O developers conference in Mountain View, California.
Attendees wait in line to attend a session during the annual Google I/O developers conference in Mountain View, California. (REUTERS)

Google has announced new features for its products at I/O 2018. Google Drive gets a makeover like Gmail, while Google Chrome gets integration for AR and VR experiences. Google has also added a new battery saving mode for Wear OS. Here's a look at all the changes.

Google Drive

Google Drive now appears to take major inspiration from the recently redesigned Gmail app. There are no new features, but the appearance has been tweaked to match with other Google products.

To begin with, the Drive interface background has been changed from gray to white for a neater look. The boxes and icons have also been given rounded corners and a taller appearance than before, Engadget reports.

In addition to that, the Drive logo is now placed prominently on the top left corner of the interface. The icons have also been shuffled a bit. The latest changes to Google Drive will start reflecting in some time as the company is gradually rolling out the redesign.

Wear OS

At I/O 2018 Google also devoted much of its time on AI, and a small amount of attention was paid to its Wear OS (previously referred to as Android Wear). Google is introducing a couple of changes to its Wear OS developer preview 2 for wearables. The Wear OS beta version releases this week and one of the standout feature is the addition of an enhanced battery saver mode, TechCrunch reports.

As the name suggests, the mode will particularly take care of the small battery inside wearables. When enabled, the mode will switch the watch face to a power efficient one and shut off radios, the touchscreen, tilt to wake, and such features which consume more power.

Quick press of the side button will show time while a longer press will restore functionality. In addition to the new battery saver mode, Google has also added support for Actions on Google which will make your Android wearables more useful with third-party smart objects.

WebXR for Chrome

The search giant introduced WebXR for its Chrome browser allowing it to support immersive experiences without the need for additional app.

WebXR allows developers to optimize and integrate VR and AR experiences right into the Google Chrome browser, Engadget reports.

This essentially means you will be able to virtually place 3D objects into an augmented reality space right inside Chrome browser. It is to be understood that web AR or VR is still a thing under development and it will take some time for it to be a fully baked product and come to the regular users of Google Chrome.

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