Sure, Google may have acquired Zagat and used the company's renowned ratings engine to start powering its data on everything from electronics stores to car washes. However, the review site got its start in restaurants way back in the day, and even after the purchase, continues to provide helpful information on every aspect of your food consumption outings. So, why not give the service its own app? Well, that's just what everyone's favorite search giant did!
Looking to give users the "fastest, smartest launcher for Android," Jesse Andersen brought Conjure to the Play Store recently. The app, which is actually more of a launcher companion, can perform an incredible range of actions, from finding and launching apps to calling contacts, adjusting device settings (like volume, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, etc.), and searching the web.
What's great about this app is not that it can do a lot, but that it actually adapts to your usage, storing a history of actions and listing content results by frequency of use.
CloudMagic, the supersearch service that crawls through your Gmail, GDocs, GCal, Contacts, Twitter, Office365, and Exchange accounts just got a whole lot more powerful. It was bumped up to version 2.1 in the Play Store, which brings integration with even more services, including Facebook, Dropbox, Evernote, Box,
iCloud, AOL, mail.com, and GMX. That's a whole lotta services.
That's not all v2.1 is good for, either: the app has been completely redesigned to shed the old-school Google Search look and to make it more ICS/JB friendly.
Yesterday's update UVLH1 for the Galaxy S II on T-Mobile may have shaken things up a bit when it comes to NFC and ISIS, but it now looks like Samsung has also sneaked in a tweak dumbing down universal search. A similar "fix" was discovered in T-Mobile's version of the Galaxy S III 2 weeks ago, and it seems like Samsung is not taking any chances with its older sibling either.
In a post to its official blog that's sure to excite users across the globe, Google has just announced that Voice Search is now available in thirteen new languages. The list of newly included languages, which range from Basque to Swedish, brings the total number of supported tongues up to 42.
In the post, Product Manager Bertrand Damiba explains just what it takes to add a new language to Voice Search – first and foremost, Google must collect "hundreds of thousands of utterances" from volunteers to bring speech recognition up to par.
Another day, another Kickstarter project. This one actually looks like it could have potential, though. Ubi is an Android-powered speaker system that connects to your local WiFi network. The small black box plugs into a power outlet and is controlled primarily via voice. It comes equipped with colored LEDs for notifications, and an array of sensors including temperature, humidity, air pressure, and ambient light. To round out the specs, the box packs a full-size USB port and a 3.5mm audio jack.
Earlier today, Google rolled out a brand new feature for its online patent research tool: prior art search. Now, while looking at a patent, you can click a single button to pull up a host of results from Google Patents, Google Scholar, Google Books, with a bit of Google's typical search results sprinkled on top. The goal, of course, is to aid in researching whether a patent that's been filed is "new and not obvious." Which is far more complex than it sounds.
This may not be strictly Android-related news, but it's safe to say that what Google does to search results is relevant to our readers' interests, no? Today, Google announced via its Inside Search blog that the company will start including the volume of valid copyright removal notices as a factor in determining how high or low a site ranks in its search results. Translation: pirate sites won't be removed entirely, but they'll start ranking lower than legitimate sites.
In a post to its "Inside Search" blog, Google announced today that several improvements are currently being rolled out to mobile search (for phones and tablets), making some of the engine's quick answers "richer, more beautiful, and more interactive."
In the recent past, users have enjoyed improvements to weather and calculator searches, with handy interactive cards (reminiscent of Google Now's visual style).
Google is now updating a heaping handful of other quick answer features including finance, currency conversion, unit conversion, dictionary definitions, local time lookup, and holiday and sunrise times.