Just one week after bringing Play Music to France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK, Google has reached a major licensing deal with Armonia, a music licensing initiative that represents an alliance of publishers from across Europe. The deal will give Play customers access to Armonia's 5.5 million musical works licensed across over 30 countries.
File this one under How did Google not have a test for this? Got a birthday or anniversary in December? Sorry - Android 4.2 doesn't know what December is. Well, rather the People/Contacts app that comes stock and is part of the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) doesn't. Wait... what?
We couldn't believe it either, but it's true. Google forgot to include December. As in, there are 11 months in a year. January after November. Christmas is ruined. Santa is dead. At least we'll save money on buying presents, right?
We verified this on a Nexus 7 and a Nexus 10 running 4.2.
In case you haven't heard (and how could you not?), Google has sold out of pretty much every new Nexus they've launched. If you head to the Play Store as of this writing, you cannot buy a Nexus 4 or Nexus 10. Even the 3G-connected Nexus 7 was unavailable for a while. As if that wasn't enough, customers started receiving emails saying their shiny new Nexus 4s were going to be delayed as much as three weeks.
So, what do we do now? Call up customer service and yell and complain? Vent on the internet and talk about how much Google screwed up this launch?
Google recently updated its SDK license terms for the first time in a long while. While most changes are minor, one change has been grabbing quite a few headlines – Google's proclamation that those using the SDK are disallowed from taking "any actions that may cause or result in the fragmentation of Android". Here's the full clause in question:
Update: It looks like the 16GB Nexus 10 is back in stock now. If you were one of the unlucky few who missed the first batch of orders, go ahead and claim yours now.
There's no denying Google's launch of its new Nexus lineup has been a little bumpy. On launch day, we saw near-instantaneous shortages of the Nexus 4 in multiple countries including the US. Shortly after the Nexus 4 sold out in the US, the 32GB Nexus 10 fell. Then the Nexus 7 3G. Just today, we heard reports that many US customers were receiving "backorder" emails, indicating their Nexus 4 order may not ship for up to three weeks.
Android 4.2 is out now and it brings a bunch of new goodies. Multiple users on a tablet, photospheres, and gesture typing are all pretty neat. What about this Miracast thing, though? If you're part of the majority of Android users out there, you know that it involves screen sharing and something vaguely to do with WiFi. Well, here. Let's clear some of that up for you.
So, Uh... What Is Miracast?
At its most basic level, Miracast is a video streaming specification created by the Wi-Fi Alliance. It allows a user to share whatever is displayed on their device's screen with another compatible product.
If you thought Google Fiber sounded like a game changer, you may want to keep an eye on this story. According to the Wall Street Journal, which has a history of having well-placed sources, Google has held talks with Dish Network discussing the possibility of partnering on a wireless carrier to compete with AT&T, Verizon, and all the rest. At first, it sounds like a pipe dream. The kind we've been hoping for since the G1. Thing is, this time, it has a shot of not being complete bupkis.
Before we get into why this might be true, though, let's take a look at why it might be false: for starters, according to WSJ's own sources, the talks are not very advanced and "could amount to nothing." Keep in mind companies talk to each other all the time without releasing products.
Update: It looks like the HSPA+ connected Nexus 7 is back in stock at the Play Store, at least for now. Those of you still hoping to get your hands on one would be well advised to claim yours now.
If the newly-released Nexus devices were people, then what we've been seeing is nothing short of that Texas Chainsaw Massacre sequel Cameron can't wait for. Both versions of the Nexus 4 have already dropped like flies, as well as the 32GB Nexus 10. Now, the 3G-connected version of the Nexus 7 is also sold out. Not too shabby.
You thought the Nexus Chainsaw Massacre was bad? You don't know the half of it. Today, many users are receiving emails that the Nexus 4s they've ordered from the Play Store are backordered and won't ship out for another three weeks. For those counting, assuming the absolute worst and no additional delays, that will result in phones in brown boxes heading to your door by early December, so if you've got holiday plans for them, don't panic. If, however, you're given to fits of hysteria when you have to wait for things, well, go ahead and panic.
Our own Cameron and Ron have both had their orders delayed and confirm their cards have already been charged.
We've heard very little out of Google internal team Niantic Labs. Before today, their sole public presence was Field Trip, a mash up of Google Now and various hyperlocal points of interest. The team'' latest creation, Ingress, defies description: it's a virtual reality game in which players are tasked with going to real-world locations to harness a fictional energy source. Also there are two "teams" and every player in the world is one one or the other. Think Alliance versus Horde.
The premise seems pretty nebulous at the moment. A new source of energy has been discovered, and it's got the potential to control people's thoughts.