Google IO 2020 seems like it's still going ahead

Google IO
(Image credit: TechRadar)

Google IO 2020 seems like it will still be held from May 12-14 despite the impact of coronavirus, which led to the cancellation of MWC 2020 and companies dropping out of shows like PAX East and GDC.

In a tweet, The Verge executive editor Dieter Bohn confirmed that, as of February 27, Google was still planning to hold its annual conference, though it will be paying attention to public health mandates:

  • Before Google IO 2020, review what happened at Google IO 2019
  • How likely will coronavirus cancel IO 2020? Check out how MWC 2020 got shuttered
  • Last year's big Google IO reveal? The cheap, fantastic Google Pixel 3a

Moreover, the company opened registration for Google IO 2020 last week and started notifying ticket winners yesterday, per 9to5Google. On the conference’s FAQ page, Google noted that anyone can get a full registration refund up and until April 15 – around a month before the event – should they back out over health concerns.

Google also pledged to continue to supply letters of support for attendees applying for a Business Visitor Visa, though that could change.

Google IO - coronavirus or no?

Google could choose to cancel the event any time, especially based on further info coming from the WHO or CDC. But the company already has the infrastructure to host the show anyway, albeit completely digitally, since it’s been livestreaming and setting up IO Extended watch parties for Google IO for years.

Google’s annual conference is a showcase for its tech efforts, and we expect Google IO 2020 to reveal software coming in this year’s big Android 11 updates and the debut of the Google Pixel 4a phones, as well as broader plans for things like 5G, infrastructure, and maybe even updates on Google Stadia

  • We'd also love to hear about what Google is doing to improve 5G phones
David Lumb

David is now a mobile reporter at Cnet. Formerly Mobile Editor, US for TechRadar, he covered phones, tablets, and wearables. He still thinks the iPhone 4 is the best-looking smartphone ever made. He's most interested in technology, gaming and culture – and where they overlap and change our lives. His current beat explores how our on-the-go existence is affected by new gadgets, carrier coverage expansions, and corporate strategy shifts.