By Christian Zibreg on May 15, 2013
The Internet giant kicked off its annual Google I/O developer conference with a three-hour long (!) keynote at San Francisco’s Moscone West, the same venue Apple reserved for its own five-day event next month. During the keynote, Google executives announced a much-rumored streaming music service that’s bound to give headache to the likes of Spotify, Rdio and Pandora.
Dubbed somewhat confusingly Google Play Music All Access, Google’s Android executive Chris Yerga noted on stage that “music unites us” and is “universal”. And with computing and mobile devices intertwined into our lives “there’s potential to bring that joy together.” Go past the fold for full details… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 15, 2013
Google’s I/O keynote is still ongoing, and the company just unveiled a major new service: Hangouts. Originally rumored to be called ‘Babel,’ Hangouts is a cross-platform messaging system that will take the place of Google Talk, Google+ Messenger, Google+ Hangout video chat, and pretty much everything else.
It’s basically a messaging app, in the same vein as WhatsApp or Kik, offering synchronized chat across virtually all of your devices. Google has mixed in a lot of its own personal flavor though, building in the ability for users to go back through their chat history, delete messages, and even grab files from past conversations… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 15, 2013
Google is in the middle of its I/O developer conference keynote right now, and so far it’s been pretty boring. There’s been no mention of consumer products yet, just some talk about developer API access and some new software and services.
The search giant did, however, unveil a new game service. Flying under the Google Play flag, the service resembles Apple’s Game Center, hosting leader boards, achievements, and facilitating real-time multiplayer. Oh, and it’s coming to iOS… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on May 15, 2013
When seeking increased sales of mobile phones, observers need to look east. That’s the word from one large analyst firm, noting more than half of all mobile phones sold during the first quarter of 2013 were in the Asia/Pacific market. For Apple, its sales in mainland China alone neared seven million units during the period, largely credited to the lower-priced iPhone 4. Worldwide, the California-based smartphone maker saw its share of mobile phone sales rise… Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on May 15, 2013
I don’t think I’ve left it up to sleuthing to understand that I pretty much loathe Siri. It’s a great idea no doubt, but the execution is so poor that it makes me hate the service. Perhaps I’m in the minority, but Siri rarely, if ever, does what I want it to. I ask her for directions to Starbucks, and she replies with “I can’t find a place called scarred duck.” It’s really pathetic.
So imagine how ecstatic I was when I first tried out the voice search embedded into Google Now. It was amazingly accurate, fast, and it didn’t sound like an old worn out robot from the 70′s. Sad to say, but this is the how Siri should be. Google owns the new gold standard for voice recognition… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 13, 2013
Hands up who lives in the Google cloud. If you keep your images on Google+ Photos (formerly Picasa Web Albums), manage documents in Google Drive or file messages with large attachments in Gmail, you are tapping the power of Google’s cloud storage. But up until today, each of these relied on their private cloud locker in the sky, which was inconvenient.
This morning, Google has tweaked the offering to include fifteen gigabytes of unified, free storage shared across Gmail, Drive and Google+ Photos. Previously, Google gave you ten gigabytes for Gmail and an additional five gigabytes of combined storage limited to Drive and Google+ Photos.
The change strengthens the Drive brand while simplifying things for consumers, akin to Apple’s iCloud that comes with five free gigabytes of shared cloud storage… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 13, 2013
Nearly a year ago, the Internet giant rolled out Google+ Sign-In as a way to counter Facebook Connect, a feature web site owners predominantly tap to simplify the sign in and account creation process for their users.
The Google+ SDK for iOS was released shortly after, giving Apple’s registered iOS developers a set of tools and social plugins to write programs that are deeply integrated with the Google+ thing.
Although apps that support Google+ Sign-In are few and far between, at least relative to Facebook Connect-enabled mobile software, more and more developers are integrating Google+ features into their warez. The latest example: SoundCloud, an online audio distribution platform that today updated its iOS app with support for Google+ Sign-In and sharing… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 10, 2013
Earlier this week, we told you about Apple’s complaint over Google’s resistance to hand over parts of the Android source code documentation. Apple’s request is part of its ongoing California patent fight against Samsung. Bloomberg now reports that U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal ordered the Internet giant to disclose within two days what terms it’s using to find documents Apple has requested.
Despite Google’s insistence that the collection of such information would be “too burdensome,” the court also ordered that the search monster tell Apple “which Google employees those documents came from”… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on May 9, 2013
Research firm Canalys Thursday offered data on first-quarter smart mobile device shipments, with an estimated 300+ million new units for a 37.4 percent year-over-year growth. Google’s Android powered 59 percent and Apple’s iOS powered a little over nineteen percent of these devices, according to researchers. Key takeaways: Android leads the smartphone race, Apple is holding onto the tablet market and laptop demand continues falling.
Pay attention to Canalys’s parlance because ‘smart mobile devices’ include smartphones, tablets and laptops. Another important caveat: Canalys stats don’t divulge shipped vs sold units. This is an important distinction as a device shipped into a channel does not automatically result in a device sold to a consumer… Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on May 8, 2013
As we discussed on yesterday’s episode of Let’s Talk Jailbreak, Velox is great, not so much because of what it does right now, but because of the many possibilities it opens up for future add-ons. Now the add-ons have begun to flow into Cydia, and one in particular allows you to search Google without necessitating the launch of the Google app.
Check out our overview of Google Search for Velox inside. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 8, 2013
Apple’s proxy fight against Google and its Android platform has just taken an interesting turn as the iPhone maker asked the court to force Google into turning over Android’s source code. The request is part of Apple’s ongoing California patent fight against Samsung. Bloomberg reports today Apple is dissatisfied with Google’s handling of the request.
According to Apple’s lawyers, the search giant in “improperly withholding information” related to Android’s source code documentation. Google’s mobile operating system, Apple argues, “provides much of the accused functionality” and argues the Google platform is used in all of Samsung’s allegedly infringing products… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 7, 2013
Isn’t it interesting how Google circumvents Apple and builds its own platform on top of iOS? Not only are the Internet giant’s popular services like Maps, Gmail, YouTube and Search available as native iOS apps, they’re among most downloaded App Store items.
Despite early complaints of excessive battery drain (and Google’s mild response), the potentially disruptive Google Now feature is now available on iOS devices through Google’s standalone Search iOS app. And now, Google Now could be heading to Macs… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 7, 2013
Hot on the heels of yesterday’s Gmail update—which added the ability for users to choose to use Google’s iOS apps over their stock counterparts—Google has published a blog post reminding iOS devs that they too can utilize Google’s offerings.
Particularly, it spotlights Chrome integration in the post, informing third-party developers that they can use a simple callback function in their apps that will launch web links in Chrome (if it’s available, obviously) instead of mobile Safari… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 6, 2013
Google on Monday issued a maintenance update to its Gmail client for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices, adding two welcomed new features.
Gmail version 2.2.7182 adds support for signing out of a single account in settings. Previously, hitting the Sign Out button signed you out of all accounts at once, which was rather clunky and not very user friendly.
The application also has a new setting which lets you specify that YouTube, Google Maps and Chrome links go directly to these native apps instead of the mobile web – of course, provided you have them installed on your device… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 6, 2013
In a preliminary ruling, the European Commission on Monday found that Motorola Mobility had abused its dominance in wireless communications patents in seeking an injunction against Apple in Germany. The finding opens the door to a potential antitrust charges to be filed against Google. The EU in its formal statement of objections informed the Google-owned smartphone maker of its allegations that it had leveraged its market position and abused standards-essential patents in order to enforce an injunction against Apple… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 3, 2013
Looking at tech news headlines from the past few months, you’d think Apple was in trouble. And not just “we had an off quarter” trouble, but “is Apple the new Research in Motion” trouble. Some folks even think Tim Cook could lose his job.
But looking at the bare numbers seems to suggest the exact opposite. The company just reported a record-breaking quarter. It has more than $130 billion in cash. And according to a new report, it has nearly 40% of the US smartphone market… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 3, 2013
Google’s Glass project, the head-turning augmented reality-enabled glasses that run apps, continues to get largely positive reviews across the board. The pricey $1,500 eyewear currently requires a companion Glass app running on an Android handset in order to present information, such as upcoming meetings and missed calls, rendered as a futuristic overlay in front of your field of vision.
According to a new report, the Internet giant is working on a simplified system that will allow Glass to work with any iPhone or other mobile device, over Bluetooth, and use your smartphone for turn-by-turn navigation and text messages… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 2, 2013
As we told you yesterday, a growing number of users report problems with the Google Now feature depleting their iPhone’s battery fast due to its reliance on iOS location capabilities. On Monday, the Internet giant finally brought Google Now capabilities to iDevices via an update to its native Search iOS app.
Responding to the battery life concerns, Google on Thursday issued a statement denying any problems with the app draining your iPhone’s battery… Read More
By Jeff Benjamin on May 2, 2013
It was inevitable. Since the infusion of Google Now into the official Google Search app, jailbreak developers have begun releasing Cydia packages to tweak how the app works.
StartToNow is one of the first such tweaks. It forces Google Now to be the first thing to appear when you launch the official Google Search app. More inside… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 2, 2013
It looks like it’s ‘release your updates’ day today for iOS developers. Earlier this morning we saw software updates seeded by Apple and Instagram, and now we have one from Google for its popular YouTube Capture app.
Today’s update brings the app to version 1.3, and it includes a handful of new features and improvements. For starters, it features a new ‘only upload on Wi-Fi’ option, and there’s also HD and speed enhancements on board… Read More