Google I/O is going to be all about virtual reality

Google Cardboard
Cardboard was Google's start in VR.

Ordinarily the publication of the Google I/O schedule wouldn't raise too many eyebrows, but this year it's more interesting than normal: you can look forward to lots of talks about virtual reality, the hot tech of the moment.

Just in case you've got no idea what we're talking about, I/O is Google's conference for developers, which this year starts on 18 May. We usually get a lot of Android and Chrome announcements, plus news on where Google wants to go next.

And in 2016, the company is obviously focused heavily on VR. One session is subtitled "Google's Vision for VR", so hopefully we'll have an exciting news announcement or two to look forward to. As always, we'll bring you the news as it happens.

Virtual sanity

It's no secret that Google is keen on VR, of course - Google Cardboard was unveiled at I/O back in 2014, and we had plenty of VR-related news last year too. The rumours are that Android N will come with more virtual reality tech built in as well.

If you've ever played around with Tilt Brush on the HTC Vive, that's a Google product, and YouTube was one of the first platforms to support 360-degree video. Project Tango, Google's augmented reality smartphone, also gets a mention in the conference schedule.

Perhaps it would be more surprising if there weren't any VR sessions at Google I/O 2016, but it's interesting to note that the company has devoted an entire track to the topic and put in sessions on VR gaming and VR cinema. This time next month we'll know what it's got to show off.

Speaking of virtual reality, here's an experiment with the HTC Vive:

David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.