Google announced yesterday on their Lat Long Blog that the Local Guides program would be receiving one of the largest updates since its inception. Local Guides is a global community of people who love to contribute to Google Maps. These contributions come in the form of writing reviews, uploading photos, adding new places, answering questions, and fixing data about businesses. Millions of people around the world rely on information in Google Maps every day to navigate to their destination or choose where they want to eat dinner, so having more information at their disposal can only be a good thing. Read More
Raise your hand if this comes as unexpected news to you. Crickets. Alright, we know Google isn't really revealing the most secret of secrets with its newest "Cellular support comes to Android Wear" announcement, but it is clarifying a few things we didn't know about how LTE would work on our smartwatches.
In his post, Peter Ludwig, Product Manager for Android Wear, explains that cellular connectivity on Wear will allow you to leave your phone behind and use your smartwatch on the go. However, it doesn't seem like you'll be able to completely forego the phone, à la Samsung Gear S2, because both phone and watch will need to be turned on and connected to a network for Wear to do its thing. Read More
Google knows a lot about you. From your name to your location, photo, email and physical addresses, places you've lived, education, and more, there's a breadth of information that you're leaving scattered across the Internet that God-knows-who can find out about you. If you want to edit and manage that information, and most importantly specify which groups of people have access to which personal details, you had to know to head into your Google+ profile, go to the About tab, and click to edit each field to see if it's private, public, or limited to your G+ circles.
Now there's a better place and a simpler and more intuitive way to manage that information. Read More
Google has a number of neat case options in the Google Store for this year's Nexus phones. If you've been planning on picking up one of the official cases like the "Adopted" model, you might want to pay attention to the buttons. It actually makes taking a screenshot almost impossible. If you've already got one of the official cases and have thus far been under the impression you are losing your mind, you'll be happy to know it's not you. Read More
Many of Google's most important products reply upon making computers behave more like people. Whether you're talking about speech recognition or the new Smart Reply feature of Inbox, you need a machine to understand abstract concepts. Google makes this happen with a machine learning system called TensorFlow, and today the company has decided to open source this platform so anyone around the world can use it for research and product development. Read More
The OnHub router has quickly become an interesting novelty in the sometimes stoic home networking segment thanks to its forward-looking hardware and user-focused software. And Google isn't letting up on the latter: the router is already receiving its first software update, about three months after the launch of the TP Link-branded OnHub and just a week after the announcement of the ASUS version.
That being said, there isn't anything in this update that's particularly mind-blowing. According to the changelog posted on a Google support page and corroborated by an owner on Google+, the changes are focused on better performance and network management. Read More
As an Android user, you are forgiven for not knowing who or what Fly Labs is. The company's video editing suite of applications is only available on iOS so your exposure to its products may have been non-existent. But you're about to hear more about Fly Labs or at least its products' features since it has just been acquired by Google.
The company announced the acquisition on its site and Google Photos' product lead David Lieb reiterated the news, dubbing Fly Labs as the "creators of the world's best video editing apps." I don't know about the world's best, but Fly Labs has some very interesting products under its name. Clips puts fragments of videos together, reorders them, and tags music or voice recordings on top of them. Tempo edits slow-motion, fast-forwarded clips, and time-lapse videos. Fly uses gestures to edit videos, apply cuts and transitions, integrate picture-in-picture, or split the screen. Read More
We've pointed out before that Android has a lot of somewhat questionable birthdays, but November 5th is arguably the birth of the platform. On this day in 2007 the Open Handset Alliance was formally announced, uniting Google, HTC, Samsung, LG, Sony, Motorola, and dozens of software companies, chip manufactures, and mobile carriers, in the cause of promoting Android. It was presented as an open-source alternative to then-dominant mobile operating systems like Microsoft's Windows Mobile, RIM's BlackBerry, Nokia's Symbian, and - at least at the time - the looming specter of the iPhone.
The mobile market changes fast, and in "just" eight years it's been radically altered. Read More
India is big. Really big, and really complicated. I don't think it's possible for an American white guy like me to wrap his head around a place where every region has languages, dialects, and cultures that are found nowhere else on the planet, yet are still ostensibly united into a single country. That being the case, having a single keyboard to support India as a whole, where many of its residents rely on their regional language and actually speak English better than (or instead of) Hindi, seems a little odd. Read More
There's a new version of Drive rolling out today, and it focuses on improving the experience around file sharing in several ways. Notifications for shared files and folders are getting better in a few ways, getting access to files is easier, and you can preview files in Drive even if you haven't logged in. It's not all live right away, but you can install the updated app right now. Read More