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Google To Adopt HTTP/2 Support In Chrome 40, Plans To Kill SPDY By Early 2016

If you're the type of person that closely follows networking protocols and web server optimizations, you've probably heard of SPDY. This is Google's re-imagining of the HTTP protocol, designed to reduce latency, streamline data flow, and generally speed up data transmission from a server to your browser. Well, you can forget about it. Google is about to kill SPDY, but for a good reason. The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) is getting close to finalizing a major revision to the HTTP protocol, dubbed HTTP/2.

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[Birthday] Google Maps Turns 10 Years Old Today, Let's Take A Look Back

It might be hard to believe, but the Google Maps we know and love launched 10 years ago today. Before Android, Chrome, Google Plus, Youtube, and most of the other services that make up the core of the Google experience, we had Maps. And while it might be saying too much to argue that Maps led the way to Google's recent successes, it is certainly under-appreciated for its role.

The Beginning

Google Maps wasn't the first online map service. It also didn't obviously relate to Google's claim to fame: search. It's important to remember that by 2005, Google was no start-up anymore.

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Google Acquires Photo And Video Backup App Odysee, Folds Developers Into Google+ Team

It's been a while since Google bought up another company - with the regularity that the folks in Mountain View go on the corporate equivalent of a shopping spree, you might say they're overdue. The latest Google acquisition is Odysee, an app and service that automatically backs up photos and videos taken on mobile and saves a copy in the cloud and/or on users' home PCs.

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The Android and iOS apps have already been un-published on the Play Store and App Store, and according to the Odysee home page, the service will shut down completely on February 23rd.

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Google Offers Live Video Helpouts Sessions For Would-Be Nexus And Chromebook Buyers On The Play Store

If you're a regular Android Police reader, you probably don't need any "sales assistance" when picking out a new phone, tablet, or laptop - pretty much everything you could want to know is just a web search away. But some people appreciate the personal touch, which is why those guys in the blue shirts at Best Buy still have jobs. To help out these sorts of shoppers, Google is offering live video chat assistance for hardware shoppers on the Play Store.

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Image credit: TechCrunch

The new service leverages Google's own Helpouts service (an instruction and assistance portion of video Hangouts) and the infrastructure of the Play Store.

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Google's Latest Android Commercial Reaches Cute Factor 11 By Mixing Adorable Animals And Disney's Robin Hood

In 1973 Disney released Robin Hood, a kid-friendly re-telling of the English outlaw legend with anthropomorphic animal characters. There wasn't anything odd about that  - its previous release was The Aristocats. What was odd about the movie was the tonal shift to American folk music, with Texas-born singer Roger Miller providing the songs and narration, and even appearing as Robin Hood's musical merry man Alan-a-Dale (an animated rooster in this version). It is perhaps the most unique of Disney's animated movies in its era.  

What is all this doing on an Android blog? Well, some genius over in Mountain View thought that Miller's opening song for the movie would be perfect for Android's current "be together, not the same" ad campaign.

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Timely Gets First Significant Update In Ages With Material Tweaks, Support For Alarms/Timers Through Google Now, And More

Development of the popular Timely alarm clock slowed to a crawl when Google acquired the company just over a year ago, but there have been a few small updates since then. Today is a big one, though. Timely v1.3 adds some new features, fixes some bugs, and even adopts a few Lollipop UI elements.

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Lollipop Upgrades Coming To Android One Phones In India 'In The Next Few Weeks,' According To Google

Indian readers, if you picked up a budget-friendly Android One device when the new line launched last year, you're probably wondering where your !@#$ing Lollipop upgrade is. After all, Google promised speedy upgrades when they launched the phones with help of local manufacturers Spice, Karbonn, and Micromax. According to this Google+ message, those phones will be upgraded to Lollipop "in the next few weeks." Unfortunately Google's Indian branch wasn't any more specific than that.

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It's safe to assume that the update they're talking about will be the same one coming to Android One phones in Indonesia: Lollipop 5.1. The 5.1 update, which presumably includes fixes for performance and usability issues that stemmed from the initial 5.0 rollout, has already been confirmed for the Indonesian launch of Android One and various Nexus devices.

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ADT-1 Gets Updated To Android 5.0.2 (LRX22G), OTA ZIP Available Now

If you went to Google I/O 2014, you probably treasure the ADT-1, the first Android TV set-top box that was never made available for retail purchase. It's also the first Android TV device to be updated to version 5.0.2... out of an admittedly limited field at the moment. LRX22G contains a few small changes to the core of the system for a few easy performance improvements, but nothing dramatic, so don't sweat it if you aren't part of the initial OTA rollout.

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Screenshot credit: Derek Ross

If you just can't wait, here's the OTA ZIP file - you'll need an unmodified ADT-1 and a PC to flash the file with via the ADB interface.

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Google Search's New Mortgage Calculator Can Help You Plan Beyond The Down Payment

The information you get from Google searches isn't always as reliable as it sounds, but when it comes to simple math, you can bet the search engine is giving you more accurate information. Now Google is turning things up a notch by tossing a calculator widget into your search results to help plan out your mortgage and other loans.

Screenshot 2015-02-03 at 3.45.37 PM

To get the loan widget to appear, search for terms along the lines of "interest," "loan," or "mortgage" calculator. The resulting widget lets you key in a total amount, an interest rate, and a length of time. Google will then give you the total cost you can expect to pay when everything is said and done. The widget works on desktops and mobile devices alike.

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The Android Issue Tracker Is Being Overrun With Spam And Google Won't Do Anything About It

For weeks now, the vast majority of recent issues in Google's public Android issue tracker have been spam. This is no sophisticated attack, just a barrage of the most transparently useless bug submissions you can imagine. It is completely crowding out legitimate issues and it appears Google is not too concerned about that fact. We would file a bug report about it, but...

 

Nearly a hundred more posted just in the time I sifted through grabbing screenshots. I did see the number fluctuate a bit, suggesting that maybe Google has taken some measures to decrease it. If they have, though, they're doing a very poor job.

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