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Google+ Collections Set To Launch Tomorrow, May 4th

Google is just about ready to introduce Collections to Google+ publicly, according to sources.

Evidently, Collections is expected to launch tomorrow, May 4th, in the morning (Pacific Time), with an announcement coming from the official Google+ page of ... Google+. After its announcement, the feature will activate for web and Android users on a rollout that's expected to last a day or so. There's no word yet on when Collections will come to iOS.

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Google Apparently Testing 'Collections' For Followable, Curated Content Sets On Google+

According to a tipster (and a report over at DroidLife), Google is testing a new feature for Google+ that could be big news for the platform. For now, it's called "Collections," and it's being tested for an unspecified release target.

The basic idea behind Collections is curated content sets - like Pinterest boards or Dribbble buckets, users could curate pieces of content into their collection, with others viewing, sharing, and following those collections as they please.

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Rumor: According To The Information, Google's Working On An Ingress TV Show

Google's Ingress, made by Niantic Labs, has been quite a phenomenon. Those who have paid attention know the game has had a storied history since its initial launch as a closed beta in 2012, and a quick Google+ search shows that engagement doesn't really seem to be slowing down. The Ingress YouTube channel continues to pump out content and updates for players on various in-game goings on.

But, according to a report from The Information, Google isn't content to just have a cult hit of a game on its hands. Google has partnered with Sean Daniel Co. to make a television show based on the game, with producers "in talks with candidates to serve as its showrunner." This information comes from "two people who have been involved in the discussions."

Despite this somewhat surprising rumor, The Info is sure to note that this "doesn't appear to reflect a broader move into film or TV production by Google," and that Google "isn't particularly interested in cashing in on Ingress' worldwide audience, instead viewing the TV show as a deeper extension into the game's hybrid reality-fictional world and a way to provide a more intimate connection with its players."

Indeed, the hybrid nature of the game is one of the facets that propelled it to popularity as users choose sides and vie for portals at real-world physical locations, sometimes cooperating across factions to produce "faction art" like this dragon in Norwich.

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Rumor: YouTube Is Preparing A Re-Launch Of Its Live Streaming Service With A Focus On Twitch-Style Gaming

Have you noticed that it's impossible to search for a game-related video on YouTube without seeing dozens of hour-long "Let's Play" videos? You're not the only one. According to a report from The Daily Dot, Google is looking to re-make YouTube's live streaming service (the one you use for every official Android event) with a focus on video games. The report cites anonymous sources "within the streaming industry," so it's firmly in the rumor department for the time being.

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DOTA 2 2014 World Championship Tournament. Image credit: Polygon

While there's no way to confirm the report, it certainly makes sense.

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Report: Google Has Assigned Engineers To Build A Version Of Android Just For Virtual Reality

At the first few major tech conferences of the year, CES in Las Vegas, Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, and the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, the current trend of virtual reality is inescapable. Such disparate players as Facebook, Samsung, and Razer are all throwing their weight behind various virtual reality headsets, and software developers are scrambling to meet the demand for apps, games, and videos. According to this report by the Wall Street Journal, Google isn't content to dip its toe into VR with the mostly experimental Cardboard platform.

cardboard

The paper cites "two people familiar with the project" who say that the company is working on another branch of Android specifically for virtual reality hardware and software.

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The Cat Is Really Out Of The Bag: Galaxy S6 And S6 Edge Appear Side By Side In More Leaked Images

Now that the Samsung Galaxy S6 is approaching its real unveil at MWC, the leaks have turned into an open faucet. Following yesterday's images of the Galaxy S6 from all angles, today we have a couple of photos of the S6 and S6 Edge side-by-side being all, "I'm flat!" and, "I'm curved!" Oh come on, you're both pretty. I mean, kind of.

galaxy-s6-s6-edge-1 galaxy-s6-s6-edge-2

New XDA member graaler posted these screenshots of images of both devices from the front and the back. They appear to be similarly sized, with the S6 Edge looking slightly more svelte thanks to its curved, well, edges. The home button is present on both devices, with a few rumors talking of an improved fingerprint reader, and there are no on-screen navigation keys to be found.

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Rumor: Google Working On A Community For 'Amazing Foodographs' Called Tablescape

Last month an interesting rumor circulated on El Androide Libre. According to a tipster who got in touch with Libre by email, Google was working on a new service called Tablescape - an apparent extension of Google+ aimed at foodie photographers.

tablescape1

Information was relatively sparse (we don't know, for instance, when the service may debut if at all), but the tipster provided Libre with plenty of screenshots, showing a stream reminiscent of Google+, with posts, content creation, and awesome iconography for food categories. Inside the navigation drawer, users could access their own "foodographs," featured posts, a "dish of the day," and general exploration options.

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[Rumor Smash] NVIDIA's SHIELD Tablet To Be Refreshed This Summer - Don't Hold Out For A New Model In March

Earlier this week a report surfaced about a successor to NVIDIA's high-powered SHIELD Tablet coming "within a couple of months," to be announced at the GPU Technology Conference starting on March 17th. The report claimed that the new SHIELD Tablet would be using NVIDIA's next-gen mobile chipset, the Tegra X1, which was announced at CES 2015 without any accompanying smartphone or tablet.

A new generation of SHIELD hardware powered by the Tegra X1 is a no-brainer - despite tepid interest outside of the Android and gaming communities, NVIDIA has shown no sign of slowing down its first-party mobile brand.

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WSJ: Google's Nova Carrier Will Be Able To Switch Between Sprint And T-Mobile Depending On Which Has The Best Signal

Almost every carrier story we post has at least a few versions of the following comments—"I would totally use carrier X, but it doesn't work very well where I live," and, "I don't know why everyone is always talking smack about carrier Y, it works great in my area." According to the Wall Street Journal, Google's rumored MVNO could put an end to that by not only supporting both T-Mobile and Sprint, but by switching between the networks automatically depending on which signal is better.

T-Mobile-Sprint-logo

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[Update: It's Live] Google Is Launching Project Bigtop As 'Inbox By Google' Later Today

Update: It's live.

Last night, we revealed a project codenamed Bigtop that Google has been working on for a few years. And now, I feel confident enough to announce that it's launching later today as 'Inbox by Google' (not to be confused with Inbox).

bigtop

According to multiple sources, the service, which has been in development since 2012, is going to be invite-only at launch, just like Gmail was, and will at first target Gmail users. Predictably, it will be available at inbox.google.com.

Of course, if we manage to score any invites and can spread more of them around, I'm going to probably spend the remainder of the day doing so on the site and Google+.

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