By Christian Zibreg on Mar 9, 2014
After becoming the world’s top mobile operating system for smartphones and tablets, Google’s Android software wants to become the leading platform for wearable devices.
CNET’s Daniel Terdiman, reporting from the SXSW conference, has just tweeted that Google’s Sundar Pichai confirmed that the Internet giant will be releasing its own Android software development kit (SDK) for wearable devices in the next two weeks.
The move indicates the search company’s interest in the emerging wearable devices market, which has not exploded yet but is being closely watched in part due to Apple’s rumored iWatch wearable project. Google itself is thought to be working on a smartwatch of its own… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Mar 5, 2014
Google’s free Gmail app for the iPhone and iPad is being continuously improved and that’s a good thing.
Now, I myself am a Mailbox convert so the only reason for keeping Gmail on my device is to occasionally check out new features. If anything, today’s Gmail update gives me two new reasons to reconsider handling my email in Gmail more frequently. Now available, Gmail 3.0 brings out two major improvements.
Firstly, the app now uses Background App Refresh, a new iOS 7 technology which lets apps ask the operating system to retrieve new content even if they’re not running. As a result, switching from one app back to Gmail immediately serves up-to-date inbox, negating the need to manually refresh content.
And secondly, it improves the experience by signing you in automatically using the same Google Account defined in Google’s other iOS apps, such as Maps and Google+… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 28, 2014
The popular read-later service Pocket (formerly Read It Later) has been bumped to version 5.1. The new build adds a pair of useful features and squashes a few bugs (and likely introduces new ones). Now available free in the App Store, the new Pocket 5.1 lets you use your Google account to sign up and log in to Pocket.
This tremendously useful feature allows new users to start using the app without too much hassle.
Previously, you had to create an account with Pocket before you could use their service. I wish all apps supported standard logins via Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo. There’s nothing worse than being prompted to create a brand new account with a service – that’s yet another username and passwords to worry about.
I’ve included additional information about the other new feature right after the break… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 27, 2014
Google updated the iOS client for its popular messaging platform Hangouts today, bringing the app to version 2.0. The update brings about a number of improvements including full optimization for the iPad and iOS 7 and more.
A few new features have also been added, such as the ability to share animated stickers and record and send video messages up to 10 seconds long. Additionally, you can send a map of your current location to other Hangouts users… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 27, 2014
Google has struck an interesting partnership with FOX allowing fans of American Idol, the popular reality-singing competition series, to vote for their favorite performers right through the Google.com search engine and inside the official Search app for iOS and Android. On-air voting is as easy as searching for ‘american idol’ or ‘idol’ during the voting window and selecting from your fav finalists.
You can cast up to 50 votes for each contestant and vote for as many contestants as you want, Google explained yesterday… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 27, 2014
In the wake of numerous reports that all point to the same conclusion – that malware infestation is running amok on Android – the Internet giant made an unusually open statement through the mouth of its Android lead, Sundar Pichai, who finally admitted that Android wasn’t built for security.
“If I had a company dedicated to malware, I would also be targetting Android”, Pichai allegedly said to a stunned audience at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. When your own platform lead starts making such frank statements about Android security, it’s high time you considered taking these security reports at face value… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 27, 2014
Reuters is reporting that The European Commission has invited Apple and Google to discuss a flurry of user complaints surrounding in-app purchases. The move follows numerous media reports that center on disgruntled parents who were shocked to find that their children racked up vast credit card bills by making content purchases in free-to-play games.
The Commission is arguing that it’s Apple’s and Google’s responsibility not to misleading consumers. The Commission also called upon greedy app creators to provide “very concrete answers” in respect to in-app purchasing concerns… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 26, 2014
Both Apple and Google are believed to be working on wearable devices right now with plans to release them before the end of the year. And while we’ve seen zero physical evidence of Apple’s iWatch project, some photos of an alleged Google smartwatch prototype just surfaced.
Android Police has posted photos of what appears to be a Motorola-branded smartwatch in an early development stage. The site says the device would have debuted with the “Google Watch” moniker as part of the Nexus family, but believes Google chose to go a different route… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 24, 2014
After Sarah Perez and Darrell Etherington over at TechCrunch ran a story last night detailing some of the aspects of Google’s rumored smartwatch project, The Wall Street Journal and CNET on Monday reported that the device will probably be manufactured by LG Electronics. Google should detail its operating system in March and release a software development kit for third-party developers in June.
Apple is of course, rumored to be hard at work on its own wearable device, dubbed by the press the iWatch. A number of medical expert hires indicate that Apple’s device may also include health-sensing capability such as tracking blood glucose and hydration levels, although not as advanced as previously speculated… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 23, 2014
If you’re still in the camp of folks who believe that there won’t be a market for wearables, you might want to take a look around. Pebble just launched a new smartwatch, Samsung just announced a new Gear watch and Apple reportedly has one in the oven.
Google is also believed to be working on a smartwatch, and according to insiders, it’s almost finished. TechCrunch is reporting this weekend that the search giant is putting the finishing touches on a watch that runs Android and houses a full-color display… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 20, 2014
The entire Internet is abuzz right now with this whole Facebook and WhatsApp deal. For the few that haven’t heard yet, the social network announced yesterday afternoon that it has agreed to acquire the cross-platform messaging giant for a staggering $16 billion.
Since the announcement, details of the buyout negotiations between the two companies have begun to slowly trickle in, and as you might expect, some of them are rather interesting. Fortune, for example, is reporting that Google actually offered to buy WhatsApp first… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 20, 2014
Imagine directions to a new location not stopping at the street address, or never getting lost in a new building again. Or, how about playing hide-and-seek in your house with your favorite game character or competing against a friend “for control over physical space with your own miniature army”?
That’s the promise behind Project Tango, a new Google initiative which seeks to give mobile devices “a human-scale understanding of space and motion”.
The brainchild of Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects group, Project Tango is, on the surface, an unimpressive Android phone with a five-inch display and a four-megapixel camera.
But scratch deeper and you’ll find custom hardware like two Computer Vision Processors, sensors for measuring geometry and seeing in three dimensions, a camera which tracks motion and other goodies that basically turn this handset into a device that can map your environments, track its motion in full 3D space and much more… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 20, 2014
Google is testing a new iPhone application which aims to make it easier to access public Wi-Fi hotspots on your handset, Engadget reported Thursday.
The software will make it simple to automatically authenticate and connect users to Google’s free hotspots inside Starbucks stores “or wherever they are available”.
The publication has learned that the Google Wi-Fi app could even tap users’ Google Account to “install a dedicated security certificate on their device to automatically authenticate devices when a connection is available,” bypassing the need to go through the clunky login process when joining public Wi-Fi hotspots… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 19, 2014
Google senior vice president Sundar Pichai just announced via Google+ that the company’s annual I/O event is scheduled for June 25-26 this year. For those unfamiliar with the conference, it’s a lot like Apple’s yearly WWDC gathering in San Francisco.
The timing is particularly interesting in that Google held I/O in May last year, well before Apple’s WWDC event. It would seem that this time the search giant is hoping to get a glimpse at what Apple has cooked up this year before divulging all of its own secrets…
By Cody Lee on Feb 18, 2014
Google posted an update for its popular Translate iOS client today, bringing the app to version 2.1. The update includes various UI improvements, including the new iOS 7 keyboard and status bar, as well as support for new languages.
The new keyboard is great, as it brings the app in line with other iOS 7 apps, and the same goes for the transparent status bar. And as for the additional handwriting languages support, it includes Arabic, Hebrew, Maltese, and more… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 18, 2014
Andy Rubin is one of the original creators of Android and Apple may summon him to testify in a new trial set for late-March as part of the ongoing Apple v. Samsung legal battle. According to a report by TUAW, a witness list Apple filed with the court last week has revealed the iPhone maker is considering calling Rubin to testify on the potentially sensitive topics of the development of infringing Android features. He may also be asked to comment on “Google documents relating to such development”… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 11, 2014
Future iPhones could be built by Google robots as The Wall Street Journal reports that the search monster is working with Apple’s favorite contract manufacturer, Foxconn of Taiwan, on automating production lines.
Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou reportedly met with Google’s Andy Rubin in Taipei to talk new robotic technologies meant to “speed up robot deployment” at Foxconn plants. The machines would run Google’s upcoming robotic operating system for manufacturers. The two men have reportedly been collaborating since last year to carry out Google’s vision for robotics.
Eagled-eyed readers will remember that Google’s boss Larry Page in March 2013 put former Android head Andy Rubin in charge of a moonshot project to create a new generation of robots… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 10, 2014
Google’s official Enterprise Blog today announced a new iPhone and iPad app to manage your Google Apps domain. Google Admin, available free in the App Store, lets you manage Google Apps users on your domain, change passwords, access support, review and filter logs, access group management features such as adding and viewing group members, deleting individual group members and more.
If you’re an administrator hosting your domain on Google Apps, the app should be a no-brainer, but keep in mind you’re still going to have to access the web interface to use some of the more advanced features… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 7, 2014
Following notable excerpts from Daisuke Wakabayashi’s interview with Tim Cook in The Wall Street Journal, the financial newspaper has now posted the whole thing on its Digits blog.
The full interview gives us a more detailed insight into the mindset of Tim Cook’s Apple as the CEO discusses recent topics of interest, including Lenovo’s $2.9 billion purchase of Google’s Motorola Mobility unit and additional information regarding Apple’s share buyback program.
He also took time to touch upon the ongoing discussion concerning supposedly bigger iPhones in the pipeline, the current products not yet hitting the ceiling and lots more. I’ve included the best quotes and tidbits for your reading pleasure after the break… Read More