5 places Android has yet to conquer, but probably will soon

Over the last five years Android has grown from humble beginnings to become the most popular mobile platform on the planet. There are over 1 billion Android devices out there. Google’s OS has found a home in all sorts of unlikely places, but the possibilities are far from exhausted. Here are five places that Android could, and probably should, go next.

The All Access shower

Kohler Moxie Showerhead macroYou can already get a waterproof Bluetooth speaker as your showerhead, which could be a great musical accompaniment to your vocal gymnastics during morning ablutions. As long as you have a shower-proof phone like the Xperia Z, we can see the attraction, but why not take it further?

Those of us in colder climes (I think I speak for all of us here) demand an Android shower. Picture yourself tapping away on your smartphone before you risk exposing so much as a toe to the world beyond your duvet. The shower fires up by remote control and the stereo speakers begin emitting a tempting medley of your favorite tunes, while the 10-inch display prepares your morning news. Now that’s worth rolling out of bed for.

The smart toilet

Smart-toilet-by-SatisManufacturers have been focused on the kitchen, but how much time do you spend in the bathroom? They’re missing a trick. We’ve covered the shower already, now how about an Android toilet? If you think it sounds daft then you obviously haven’t seen the Android My SATIS app, which allows you to remote control your toilet via Bluetooth. You can flush, access bidet functions and drying, not to mention a complete bowel movement record. Now you know what’s missing from your life.

The space in front of you

SpaceTop 3D desktop interfaceWhere are our 3D projections? How about Android in mini-projectors that are attached to your clothing or glasses or whatever? They create a 3D picture that you can manipulate right before your eyes wherever you happen to be. Movies, calls, work, everything’s better in 3D right? Surely we have to break from 2D at some point; the world is, after all, in three dimensions. We’re taking steps towards 3D manipulation of interfaces with cameras that can track your movements already. Free us from the tyranny of the touchscreen.

Navigating complex menus could be much faster without several layers of depth. Visualizing just about anything would be easier, and interacting with it would be more fun. Google Glass is a first step toward this, having a projector that just fires onto your eye also solves the privacy problem over something that projects in front of you, but there’s a long way to go.

Google Now running your house

Connected-HouseThe idea of home automation is still exciting, but so far we’ve only seen light switches, power points, and thermostats that can be controlled from your Android phone or tablet. What we want is an actual Android house. Imagine a future version of Google Now running your house for you. It knows when you’re within a mile or two of home because it’s tracking your location. The heating, lights, even the oven could be fired up just before you get in. It opens the front door with a greeting on your arrival, tells you what’s for dinner, and ushers you through to the living room where it’s just about to screen the next episode of whatever you’re addicted to watching.

An Android house would cater to your every whim before you even know what you want. If you put it all together then having Android in your TV, your fridge, your toilet, and everything else starts to make some sense. Your Android house sees that you’ve gotten hooked by your current game, so rather than burn your dinner, it warns you, or just turns the heat down itself. It knows that you always take a shower after working out, so the shower fires up automatically. As long as it doesn’t go Hal on you, this sounds like heaven.

Android on the brain

Connected-Human-BodyWe’re already finding ways to reduce the physical interaction element of using our Android devices. Voice controls, eye-tracking, and wearable tech are well underway, but let’s just cut to the chase, why not embed it in our bodies? Proximity to our unique Android internals would unlock our doors and power up our cars, solving security issues instantly. We’d only have to think of a question to be given the answer, and we could record photos and video direct from the optic nerve.

Gibson’s Neuromancer looks less like sci-fi every day. People are already getting RFID chips implanted in their bodies. Mind controlled devices are being pursued to enrich the lives of the disabled and the elderly. How long before we embrace our inevitable cyborg future? Combine a chip in the brain with an Iron Man suit. Now you’re really talking.

Where would you like to see Android go next? 

(Lead image courtesy of Shutterstock/Sebastian Kaulitzki)


Dozens of bite-sized features add up to a feast in Android 9.0 Pie

Google’s latest version of Android is here, and it’s called Android 9 Pie. We’ve been using it for the past few months on a Google Pixel to see how this flavor stacks up.

Android 9.0 Pie is finally rolling out to the OnePlus 6

Android 9.0 Pie has been released. But is your phone getting Android 9.0 Pie, and if so, when? We've done the hard work and asked every device manufacturer to see when their devices would be getting the update.

Google Maps is available on Apple CarPlay with iOS 12

After months of betas, the final version of iOS 12 is here to download. The new OS comes along with tons of new capabilities from grouped notifications to Siri Shortcuts, here are all the features you'll find in iOS 12.
Home Theater

Vizio is bringing Dolby Atmos to your living room without any setup headaches

Vizio’s new home theater sound systems offer all of the good parts of Dolby Atmos object-based surround sound to your living room without the troublesome setup chores of some other systems.

Smart Reply not smart enough? Desktop Gmail users can soon opt out

Google will soon give desktop Gmail users the ability to opt out of Smart Reply. If you'd prefer to compose a short email the old-fashioned way, you can do so without seeing the auto-generated suggestions in the future.
Social Media

Instagram feature that lets you reshare others’ posts may be on its way

Despite constant calls from many of its billion-plus users, Instagram has always refused to offer an option that lets Instagrammers reshare others' posts that appear on their feed. New reports suggest this could be about to change.

Huawei is not-so-subtly trolling Friday’s iPhone launch

Apple launches the iPhone XS range to the public on Friday, but Huawei is out in force to remind the public what they could be missing out on (Hint: It's the Mate 20 Pro) by choosing Apple's latest smartphone.

The iPhone XS and XS Max are now available -- here's how to get them

After months of rumors and speculation, Apple has finally taken the wraps off of the new iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR. Now that the phones are out, you might be wondering how you can get them for yourself.

The Apple Watch Series 4 is now available -- here's where to buy it

The new Apple Watch Series 4 is here. Besides the Apple store, the company's next-generation smartwatch is be available for purchase through all four major carriers. Here's where you can get yours.

How to buy the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR in the U.K.

The new iPhone range is here, and it consists of three models: The iPhone XS, the iPhone XS Max, and the iPhone XR. You can buy the iPhone XS and XS Max in the United Kingdom now, so here's our guide on where to buy one.

Need a do-over? Here's how to factory reset an iPhone, from XS on down

Resetting an iPhone can alleviate all sorts of software woes, and wipe away personal data should you sell your device or give it to someone else. Here's how to factory reset an iPhone from within iOS or iTunes.

Audio company Bragi is suing OnePlus over the word 'dash'

Despite taking steps to change to "Warp Charge," OnePlus is being sued by audio company Bragi over the phone manufacturer's continued use of the word "dash" in the Dash Charging used in OnePlus phones.

The best weather apps for Android will keep you dry no matter where you go

You may not be able to change the weather, but you can at least be prepared for it. Check out our guide to the best weather apps for Android, so you'll always know what to expect when you step out the front door.

Keep the iPhone XS display crack-free with these screen protectors

Apple might have proclaimed the iPhone XS's glass as being its most durable ever, but that's not going to stop you from wincing if you drop your phone. Stay protected with the best iPhone XS screen protectors.