Google Smart Display: Has the Fuchsia OS found its first support?

ByDaniel Camilo 2019-06-05 406

At the turn of a sentence in Flutter's presentation, one may wonder if Google is not setting up the foundations for Fuchsia - the OS developed by Google - to take off.

At the conference for developers of Google, the Google I/O, many products are announced. This year, in addition to the new Pixels 3a and 3a XL, Nest has become the official brand behind the screens in Google Assistant. This is how the Home Hub came under the brand's umbrella and a new product was introduced: the Nest Hub Max. These two Smart Displays allow you to access the entire Google Assistant ecosystem through a screen, which is sometimes more appropriate than a simple speaker; the typical example is reading a recipe.

Games on Smart Displays

On this platform, developers can design rich experiences by offering video or visual content. But Google had put strong barriers in place, limiting the creativity of publishers. The good news is that these limitations will gradually be eliminated to provide greater flexibility.

Interactive Canvas will thus allow publishers to design applications in full screen, while using web technologies (HTML, CSS and Javascript). At first, only games will be able to use it, but it is likely that the functionalities will be extended later.

Flutter applications on Smart Displays

But what interests us most is hidden in a press release related to Flutter. This is a technology developed by Google that allows you to design cross-platform applications for Android and iOS. We can read this excerpt in particular:

“One of the platforms where Flutter is already used is the Smart Display operating system, which is used on the Google Home Hub. Within Google, some of Google's features designed for Smart Displays are now developed in Flutter. The Google Assistant team is delighted to continue to expand its feature set with Flutter in the coming months.

The objective is to use Flutter this year on the entire system interface.”

This is therefore excellent news for Flutter developers who will eventually be able to design applications for this platform as well. But between the lines, we can make a connection with Fuchsia, Google's mysterious operating system.

Indeed, Fuchsia uses Flutter to design its entire interface. However, if Smart Displays switch to this technology, the transition will be all the easier. In addition, we saw a year ago that a terminal close to a Smart Display was used as a Fuchsia test device.

Even if today Android Things is used as the operating system for Smart Displays, we may wonder if it will not be replaced soon. Indeed, the Android-based IoT platform has not had the expected success and this could be a good introduction for Fuchsia. This is of course just a guess, but it is always interesting to read between the lines of Google's press releases.

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