As Google continues to refine its solutions and services, it is giving developers new ways to update their skills and applications. The company announced it is acquiring Qwiklabs, a company known for providing hands-on cloud computing education.
“There’s no faster way to get hands-on experience with a cloud environment and to learn all the ins and outs of today’s modern cloud solutions than in a Qwiklabs lab,” wrote Jason Martin, director of professional services for Google Cloud, in a blog post. “Qwiklabs offers step-by-step instructions to learn a popular cloud service, test different use cases and train your teams to become cloud experts.”
Qwiklabs provides training in real time with real environments on demand so users can learn at their own pace. With Qwiklabs, Google hopes it can close the cloud skills gap, and teach developers how to successfully deploy and manage cloud technologies. According to Qwiklabs, its services will be used to deliver learning for Google Cloud Platform, G Suite and other products.
“We want to help businesses get the most out of their cloud investment and, with Qwiklabs, we’ll give users a place to learn and expand their cloud skills to deliver more innovation, more features and more efficiency for their customers,” Martin wrote.
In addition, the company is announcing changes to its Google Play and Firebase for Android services. Version 10.0 of these client libraries will be the last time Google supports Android API level 9. After version 10, Google will only support API level 14 at a minimum. The changes are expected to happen early next year.
“The Gingerbread platform is almost six years old,” wrote Doug Stevenson, developer advocate at Google, in a blog post. “Many Android developers have already discontinued support for Gingerbread in their apps. This helps them build better apps that make use of the newer capabilities of the Android platform. For us, the situation is the same. By making this change, we will be able to provide a more robust collection of tools for Android developers with greater speed.”
If developers update to 10.2 of Google Play services and Firebase, they will have to ensure their app minimally supports level 14 or greater. In order to avoid errors, Google suggested developers target API level 14 as the minimum supported level, or build multiple APKs to support devices with API levels lower than 14.