US protests prompt Google to postpone Android 11 unveiling

Protests spread across multiple US cities. Photo: Arturo Holmes/Getty Images

Alphabet’s [GOOG] Google postponed next week’s planned launch of the beta version of its latest Android 11 mobile operating system as protests and unrest roils American cities.

The Silicon Valley giant said in a message on its Android developers website: “We are excited to tell you more about Android 11, but now is not the time to celebrate.”

The company said in a tweet it would announce details of the rescheduled event “soon.”

The event, which was due to take place virtually on Wednesday, would have involved a keynote speech, a Q&A, and developer sessions.

Protests have rippled across the US after the killing of George Floyd, a black man from Minneapolis who died after being pinned down under the knee of a white police officer.

In New York, police made dozens of arrests. People were cuffed and loaded to city buses as unrest shut down a major thoroughfare in Brooklyn.

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Elsewhere, Bernice King, daughter of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., gave an impassioned speech at a protest in Atlanta, urging non-violent means of change.

“Let’s do this the non-violent way to deal with the evil of our time,” she said.

There were also protests across Minneapolis, Denver, Detroit, Houston and Louisville. Crowds gathered outside the White House in Washington, too, an event the police later declared “unlawful.”

Peaceful protests in Denver have been going on for more than two days. On Thursday night, there were reports that Denver police had fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse crowds after parked cars were vandalised.