We are more than two hours into the Google I/O keynote, the kickoff to a three-day event with 171 sessions. But something is quite different from last year. Google Cloud Platform has risen to the tof of the pack with 25 sessions, second only to Google Chrome with 48 and Google Android that has 35.
Last year, Google Cloud Platform had just been launched and so the sessions were more introductory in nature. This year, it has more sessions than Google+ (15); TechTalk (15); YouTube (13); Knowledge and Structured Data (6); Google Ads (5); Google Wallet (5) and Google Glass with four.
In the opening keynote this morning, Google highlighted Android, gaming, and translation APIs along with a host of other topics. In the Google Cloud platform sessions, pretty much all of what the keynote is covering gets pursued more in-depth. For example, there are sessions about intense gaming, and a session about advanced Go concurrency pattens.
Google Cloud Platform, with 25 I/O sessions, is certainly not as sexy as Google Glass but it’s importance is arguably greater than that of a single (ambitious) product. Google Cloud Platform is being positioned as the foundation for application development with third-party developers — until now, we have not seen Google push so hard to attract developers to its own platforms. But now it is trying to draw in developers with its robust collection of APIs and its vast compute and storage that serves as the backbone for Google’s emphasis on leveraging large data loads.
Android and Chrome are the Google darlings. But their vitality is only as strong as their developer communities. Google Cloud Platform plays an important role in the development of this ecosystem as evident by the broad topic areas that will be covered in the sessions over the next three days.