Google announced Friday that it will cancel its annual I/O developer conference altogether after the company announced on March 3rd that it would instead hold the I/O conference online because of the new coronavirus outbreak. Facebook, Microsoft and Apple have also moved their developer conferences to online-only meetings, but Google was the first company to cancel them altogether.
“For the health and safety of developers, employees and local communities – and the request of the local government in the San Francisco Bay Area for ‘shelter in place” – we regret to decide that we will not hold any I/O conference this year,” Google said in a Twitter post. The most important thing we can all do right now is to focus on helping people cope with the new challenges that everyone is facing. We will continue to do everything we can to help the community stay safe, continue to inform and stay in touch. We will continue to work to share Android updates with you through developer blogs and community forums. “
Google typically launches software updates at I/O conferences, and sometimes new hardware products. At last year’s conference, Google launched software updates for Android and Google Search, as well as the Nest Hub Max smart display and Google Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL phones. This year’s I/O conference was originally expected to be attended by thousands of people.