Posts with tag google

It's happening!

Google announces Android Wear, a new platform for smartwatches




androidwear-watch

Google just made it official – they’re getting into the wearable game. The company has today officially announced Android Wear, a new platform forked from the main Android branch specifically designed around the concept of wearables and, more specifically, smartwatches.

Google has confirmed that fitness will be a focus point for the platform, as Android Wear supports “real-time speed, distance and time information on your wrist for your run, cycle or walk” functionality built right into the operating system. Third party applications will likely be able to tap into this information and utilize it as they will, however Google has yet to officially confirm what capacity developers will be able to work within Android Wear just yet.

The company has confirmed however the inclusion of Google Now, allowing you to access the entire breadth of information Google has to offer, right from your watch. It works using the sort of voice recognition technology Google has implemented and nearly perfected in their Google Glass wearable – just say “OK, Google” and you’ll be able to search for whatever you’d like. Google has also implemented Notification streaming support to Android Wear, allowing you to view your smartphone’s notifications on your wrist.

As Android Wear will be an ecosystem that developers can have access to as they’d like, as with Android, Google will be relying on third party hardware manufacturers to make their Android Wear dreams a reality – at least for now. LG, Asus, HTC, Motorola, and Samsung are all on board with Android Wear and will be releasing their own smartwatches based off of Google’s new platform in the near future, with LG expected to launch theirs sooner rather than later.

A Developer Preview release of Android Wear is available starting today for developers. Google hopes you’ll use it to build notification streaming from your smartphone application into Android Wear, however it could also just be pretty fun to play with. Google has posted two YouTube videos showing off Android Wear, which you can find after the break. So all that said, the smartwatch games have now officially started – your move, Apple.

Source: Google


Has a deal been inked?

Google reportedly selling Motorola to Lenovo (confirmed!)




motorola-logo-bigWell, this is a bit of a twist. Just days after reports have suggested that Google is looking to end long running Nexus lineup of Android devices, an entirely new rumor has suggested that Google will be selling Motorola to Lenovo. While a deal has yet to be fully inked, Google and Lenovo are said to be in the late stages of discussion after sales of the Moto X and Moto G have fallen mostly flat.

Google appears to be ditching their Android hardware lineups in favor of deals with industry leaders LG, Samsung, HTC, and more which allows google to offer specialized “Google Play” editions of their handsets running stock editions of the latest version of Android, such as the Samsung Galaxy S4 Google Play Edition and the Moto G Google Play Edition.

Google originally bought Motorola for $12.5 billion a couple of years back, however the company is said to be selling Motorola for a mere fraction of that at just under $3 billion. Ouch.

Edit: It’s confirmed!

Source: Reuters


Like the Nexus 5, only bigger

Google Play releases the LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition




lg8google

On top of the new Sony Ultra Z Google Play Edition released today, Google has also released a Google-ified version of another third party device – this time, the LG G Pad 8.3. Known as the “Android version of the iPad mini” around certain parts, the LG G Pad 8.3 is an 8.3-inch sized tablet that’ll run you $329 for 16GB of storage with a Micro SD expansion, a quad-core 1.7 GHz Snapdragon processor, 2GB of RAM, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, A/B/G/N Wi-Fi support, and both rear-and-front facing cameras.

Of course, the Google Play Edition benefits from a totally stock version of Android – none of LG’s garbage skin here, just good old fashioned Android 4.4 “KitKat” designed the way Google likes it. The Google Play Edition should be seeing a steady stream of updates from Google, meaning it’ll be updated a lot more often than the default LG version if all goes according to plan.

Interested? Order now at Google Play – shipping is currently stable at 1-2 business days.

Source: Google Play


Bringing iOS up to par

Google updates Google Now for iOS with latest Android functionality




googlenow-ios

Google’s Siri-competitor Google Now has been leagues ahead of Siri for quite some time now on Android devices, and now Google is bringing all of that functionality that iPhone users have been jealous of for quite some time across the aisle and over to the iPhone for all to enjoy. The new update, released today, retains the current style of the Google application, complete with Google’s distinctive and consistent iOS style – so if you’re hoping for an iOS 7-style UI update, you’ll unfortunately walk away disappointed. That’s not to say Google Now looks out of place on iOS 7, however – far from it, it actually remains one of the more beautiful examples of flat design.

But onto what’s actually new and improved, Google’s propped up Google Now for iOS with a couple of neat tricks. First, Google Now can now send you notifications even when you’re not actively using Google Now – handy for the odd reminder on recent appointments or notifications regarding a delayed flight, for example.

Google has also brought new card functionality over to iOS, including boarding passes, Movie, concert, and event ticket support, car reservations, and train ticket reminders. And all of that is almost entirely automated, requiring little to no input from the end user. But perhaps the biggest improvement comes in the form of Now’s hands-free functionality, which was just brought to Android this week with Android 4.4 (and slightly earlier to those with Moto X’s). Essentially, all you’ll need to do now to open Google Now is speak “Okay, Google Now” and no matter where you are in your Google app, Now will open and be ready to respond to your query.

This Google Now for iOS update is available today for the low, low price of free on the App Store. You can get it at the source link below – it’s worth it, trust me.

Source: App Store


Send texts while you Hangout

Google announces updated Hangouts app for Android with SMS support




GoogleHangoutsAs Google grows closer and closer to the release of the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4, Google made a big public deal about a dramatic improvement to their Google Hangouts application that has been released on the Google Play store today that will just be a perfect fit for your new Nexus. Namely, Hangouts – the iMessage competitor that has always been a step behind Apple and iMessage due to its lack of built in SMS texting support, for those few times your friends aren’t running on Google’s proprietary messaging protocol. But no more. That’s right, starting today, Google has announced that they’ve been SMS texting right into Hangouts, finally making it the iMessage competitor it was just destined to be.

On top of the oft requested feature, Google has announced that they’ve built GIF support right into Hangouts for all your cat meme needs – again following in the footsteps of iMessage, which has supported GIFs for years now. Still, playing catchup isn’t always a bad thing – these are two pretty positive steps in the right direction for Google and Hangouts. Now Google, it’s time to stop playing in the sandbox and bring out the big funs – Android 4.4.

Via: Engadget


How about no

Google will start using you in their advertisements




This is *not* a real ad

This is *not* a real ad

Google’s been known to read your GMail so they can deliver more ads to you, but here’s a new spin on the whole situation: A quiet update to the Google Terms of Service that will take effect November 11th of this year will let Google spy on everything you do with Google so they can use all that data to target ads to your friends. Yes, you will soon become a Google Ad.

The good news is that the new ad service is only being targeted at adult users, so anyone under the age of 18 will automatically be opted out and it also sounds like when these changes go live everyone 18 and over will automatically be opted in although it can be turned off from Google Plus – if you have one of those profiles. These whole changes make me think of Google Buzz. Wasn’t Buzz such a great program causing absolutely no lashback at all? Sarcasm, of course…

Source: Google
Via: The Verge


iPhone up, Android down

Apple iOS gains ground in mobile smartphone war as Android continues to falter




comscore_august_2013_oems

This time last year, it seemed that Android was on track for absolute and total annihilation of the mobile smartphone industry, with Google’s mobile baby eating into not just puny competitors BlackBerry, Palm, and Microsoft, but also Apple’s iOS. The story, as it seems to always do, has been changing rapidly since that thought, with industry statistic analysis company comScore issuing its latest smartphone sales survey results. And the results? Well, they aren’t great news for Google.

The newest results reveals that Apple, not Google, is the clear winner this period, which looks at June – September. Though Android continues to be the number one mobile operating system currently in use on the market, impact of Android smartphones on the marketplace has fallen quite rapidly while impact and strong sales of iOS is on the rise. Out of all the Android manufactures currently selling smartphones, only Samsung managed to make any sort of gains this period; Apple’s share of the market is up 1.5%, while Samsung’s is up 1.3%. HTC and Motorola are down 2.2%, contributing to Android’s decline. And remember – this doesn’t even take into consideration the massive sales numbers of the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 5c over these past few weeks.

While not a clear indication of any real problem that requires emergency addressing by Google, it does constitute a potential worrying trend for Android – it’s becoming more and more obvious that customers aren’t interested in Android phones, but rather in Samsung phones. If you take Samsung out of the picture, not a single Android manufacturer made any noticeable positive impact in Android’s share this period. And if you’re Google, whose business strategy relies on getting as many Android devices out there via as many outlets as possible, that’s a potentially worrying statistic.

Via: TheNextWeb
Source: comScore


Bumping heads with Google now

Google purchases Bump, one of the first great third party iOS apps




bump-google-logo

Bump, the service that awe-spired iPhone users everywhere when they launched their first iOS application not long after Apple launched the App Store in 2008, has been acquired by Google. The news comes from Bump’s own official blog, where CEO David Lieb said the following:

Our mission at Bump has always been to build the simplest tools for sharing the information you care about with other people and devices.  We strive to create experiences that feel like magic, enabled behind the scene with innovations in math, data processing, and algorithms.  So we couldn’t be more thrilled to join Google, a company that shares our belief that the application of computing to difficult problems can fundamentally change the way that we interact with one another and the world.

Bump also confirmed that the service will  continue to operate as normal, and will even be pushing out new updates in the near future. However given Google’s habit of eating up and then killing fan favorite services and applications, I would start assessing your options, Bump users. You’re in for a bumpy ride.

Via: TechCrunch
Source: Bump


Google Now, remind me to buy a Moto X

Moto X coming to Sprint tomorrow for $199




moto-x-white-smallAre you excited for the Moto X as… well, a whole lot of people are? Are you a slave to the Sprint mobile empire? Then good news – Sprint has confirmed today that the Moto X will be launching on their 4G LTE network tomorrow, September 6th. Pricing is in line with other carriers – that’s $199 , which some could consider to be a little steep for what essentially adds up to a midrange phone being marketed as a high end one, but really it’s not that bad when you consider its closest competition.

Sprint has also confirmed that their $100 instant savings for new lines will continue to be in affect for anyone buying the Moto X, which means that if you’re jumping ship from another carrier to Sprint you can get yourself a nice little $100 savings, bringing the cost of the phone down to just $99. How’s that for having your cake and eating it too?

Source: Sprint


Roping off Chrome Apps

Google introduces Chrome Apps, web applications with a native touch




Pocket_Screenshot

For the longest time, “Chrome applications” merely referred to shortcuts of web applications that really didn’t have a whole lot to do with Chrome. Built with the usual array of JS/HTML/CSS that websites have largely been built with since the inception of the web itself, Chrome applications were always “dumb” applications that could be used on Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, you name it. All of that changes today as Google has announced the new Chrome Apps initiative.

Don’t let the name fool you, these new Chrome Apps share nothing with the prior crop of Chrome apps except for the name. While these new Chrome Apps can be built with all of those common web technologies you’re used to, they are also able to take advantage of “native” Chrome code to increase performance and functionality.

And because these apps are built using code propriety to Chrome, these new crops of Chrome Apps will be incompatible with other leading web browsers. Gone will be the days of using TweetDeck on IE, Firefox, and Safari – a future version of TweetDeck could very well take advantage of Chrome’s native code, meaning that you’ll need to use Chrome to access the app or bust.

wunderlist

On the upside, these new applications will continue to be cross platform compatible, meaning you’ll have no problem running them on Windows, OS X, Linux, and yes – Chrome OS. Chrome OS is really the thing that gets the most benefit out of this, as developers will for the first time be able to develop things that are slightly more complex then the common web app for Google’s other platform.

Chrome Apps are available today on Windows and Chrome OS, while OS X users will have to wait a minimum of six weeks to see their update pushed through (though I’d keep an eye on the Canary/Developer streams for something resembling a sneak peak.) Chrome Apps will be able to run on separate processes than the main Chrome app, are not required to use Chrome’s window chrome, and can be pinned to the Taskbar/Start Screen/Dock just like normal native apps.

Are you excited for Google’s new breed of Chrome Apps? Ready for your web apps to get a whole lot smarter, or maybe just bummed at Google’s throwing aside of cross-browser compatibility? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: The Verge


$199 for 8GB, $249 for 16GB

Google lowers the price of the Nexus 4, now starts at $199




LG_NEXUS4_WHITE

Want a flagship Android phone but don’t feel like paying $500+ for the likes of the Moto X, Play Edition Galaxy S4, or Play Edition HTC One? Well boy does Google have an amazing deal for you. Starting today, Google is lowering the price of their flagship Android device, the Nexus 4, from $299 to $199 – a whopping $100 off – for the 8GB model. Meanwhile, the bigger capacity 16GB model will now cost you just $249 – still less than the original price of the 8GB model.

Of course, one would assume that such a steep discount would heavily imply that Google is preparing to launch the true successor to the Nexus 4, which would likely be released in the form of a Nexus 5. We’ve had no real leaks of such a device as of yet, with many assuming prior to the formal announcement of the Moto X that such a device would act as the spiritual successor to the Nexus 4, however pricing and Android availability seems to heavily imply the opposite.

But if the thought of a current-generation Android device appeals to you, and you don’t mind that a potential replacement is just around the corner then go right ahead. We certainly wouldn’t blame you.

Via: Engadget
Source: Google Play


Google Now, buy a Moto X

Get your hands on a Verizon Moto X on August 29th




verizon-moto-x1

Are you as pumped for Motorola’s latest and greatest flagship smartphone as we are? Well good, because the time to buy is quickly approaching. According to the above screenshot taken from a Best Buy inventory system, Motorola and Verizon appear to be gearing up for an August 29th release date for the Moto X. Of course, this isn’t necessarily confirmation that that’s when Verizon nor anybody else will be selling the Moto X – just confirmation of the date that Best Buy will begin selling them.

The Moto X is the first child of the marriage between Google and Motorola. It’ll come in Black and White standard with AT&T users exclusively getting the choice between a variety of different colors and designs. It’s the first smartphone to be “made in America” (with components still made overseas) and comes with an eight-core processor, 10MP camera, 4.7″ 720p display, near stock Android 4.2, and an always-listening Google Now system that responds to your voice even when it’s in sleep mode.

Source: Android Central