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Ahead of big events from Samsung and Apple, Google reveals new update, Android Oreo

    • The most noticeable features are likely to be redesigned emojis, dots that tell you when there's an update in one of your apps, and a screen setting that shows two apps at once.
    • The new operating system will have stricter security controls on apps, faster loading times and limits on apps prone to battery overuse.
    • Google faces some steep competition in making its artificial intelligence play, Google Assistant, the tool of choice.
    Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google
    Getty Images
    Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google

    Google's latest operating system update now has a name: Android Oreo.

    The operating system is part of the artificial intelligence software push Google announced earlier this year at its annual developer conference, Google I/O. Google said in May that it would improve Google Photos and expand the reach and capabilities of Google Assistant.

    The company showed off some new features on Monday that promise to extend battery life and increase security for Android users.

    The new features are part of Android O, the latest mobile operating system. The most noticeable features are redesigned emojis, dots that tell users when there's an update in one of the apps and a screen setting that shows two apps at once.

    Behind the scenes, though, there will also be changes to make Android phones more efficient, Google said on its blog. For instance, the new operating system will have stricter security controls on apps, faster loading times and limits on apps prone to battery overuse.

    Samsung's premium handset, the Note 8, and the next iPhone, likely called the iPhone 8, are both expected to be revealed in the next couple of months.

    Google has stepped up its ambitions in mobile hardware over the past few years with the introduction of the Pixel, the first handset designed by Google "inside and out." The marriage of high-end, powerful hardware with Android software will help Google prepare for an "AI-first world," executives said last year.

    Google faces some steep competition in making its artificial intelligence play, Google Assistant, the tool of choice. The gradual rollout of Android O to Google's Beta Program, Pixel and Nexus devices could provide a closer look at how the new features stack up.

    Among home devices, Amazon's Alexa has had an early lead, dominating technology events such as this year's CES. And Apple is expected to release a handset in September that would be a huge leap forward for mobile devices. All the while, Android co-creator Andy Rubin is also coming out with a line of devices, only some of which use the Android platform.

    Google typically names its Android releases after desserts (Android N became Android Nougat, for example).

    — CNBC's Todd Haselton contributed to this report.

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