G-heads call the location AMplexUS, and unlike Google X Lab, it really exists. If you've never heard of it it is because this is the place where the TOP SECRET G-ideas are conceived and get nourished (along with batches of new über-fancy frog breeds).
After finding out about aosp.it, someone from Google, for some reason, decided to invite me to their facility to take a tour. You know how these things go: some weird kind of poisonous frogs escaped, the alarm sounded, and there was a mess all around. They let loose the leash on me and I was able to escape and prowl for the deepest secrets of the G-world. The usual stuff when mutant frogs are around, one would say.
With the handheld scanner I always carry around with me I was able to capture some cool images before I had to go back on the “normal” tour.
I am not at liberty to disclose everything I saw there, and as humans, most of it you wouldn't understand it anyway. Some of it I had trouble figuring out myself, but there's one thing I can reveal.
The next version of Android (5.0) will be called —wait for it— “MINT TO BE”.
The waving hand you see in the image above symbolizes a new technology called “Don't touch this”, where actual contact with the screen is not needed to perform gestures. It is enough for the fingers to simply be near the device, which is meant to avoid leaving skin-grease on the screen. It is not clear if this will be ready for 5.0.
According to other documents I found, Big-G is also planning to make a deal with Callard & Bowser, the Altoids manufacturer, to make special tin boxes with a hacker-friendly, ultra-cheap ARM SoC inside. A system à-la Raspberry Pi but far more powerful and Android-ready.
Ideal for every flavor of experimints, the device will initially be made entirely in USA, but I've seen notes about looking for a European manufacturer for the European market.
The expected price should be around 50 bucks, but lower prices might be possible without the tin box once the project (its provisional name being Aldroino) takes off. Hard times for Arduino appear to be ahead.
There was also a note about re-using the “mint” moniker on versions after 8.0...