Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) subsidiary Google announced late yesterday that it was canceling its Google I/O developer conference that had been scheduled to take place in May. The company posted a statement on the event website that read in part, "Due to concerns around the coronavirus (COVID-19), and in accordance with health guidance from the CDC, WHO, and other health authorities, we have decided to cancel the physical Google I/O event." 

The annual conference for developers is Google's biggest event of the year, attracting more than 7,000 attendees in 2019. The keynote address is one of the highlights and has become a springboard for some of Google's biggest announcements. Previous big reveals included the introduction of Google Assistant and the debut of the Google Home smart speaker.

A crowded stadium with a man on stage.

Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai onstage at Google I/O 2019. Image source: Google.

The company had already announced that Google Cloud Next 2020 in April would become a digital-only event, while maintaining the keynotes, breakout sessions, interactive learning, and digital "ask an expert" sessions that characterized previous live events. 

These are just the latest in a string of high-profile event cancellations and modifications within the tech industry in deference to the spread of COVID-19.

Earlier this week, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) said it would adopt a virtual format for its Most Valuable Professional (MVP) Global Summit, which was originally scheduled in be hosted in Bellevue and Redmond, Washington, in mid-March.  Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE) made a similar decision this week, announcing that its Adobe Summit & Magento Imagine -- a conference that attracted 16,000 people last year -- would become an online-only event. Last week, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) canceled its F8 developers conference, though it will host live-streamed presentations that were originally scheduled for the event.