After the successful launches of Play Music in Europe, Magazines in Canada, and Movies in a handful of countries, Google has made another step in its international Play crusade, today bringing Movies and Books to Brazil.
Android users in South America's largest country will now have access to thousands of Brazilian titles from Google's collection, along with movies and TV shows. Interestingly, Google's own international availability page hasn't been updated at the time of writing to reflect the expansion to Brazil, but just the same, users can access the store and look for their favorite titles.
Of course, the addition of Brazil only brings the total number of countries with access to Play Books and Movies to around ten, but it's still nice to see Google continuing the arduous task of expanding their media services globally.
Alright, yes. We've spent over a month getting upset because Christmas starts just way too dang early these days. It's December now, though. Is it finally okay to get in the holiday spirit a bit? Cool. Because these Spheros—robotic balls that can be remotely controlled by Android and carry an array of sensors and lights—are beautiful. The company behind the bots choreographed these 28 units to the tune of Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24, as performed by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
For the unaware, the song is a mashup of God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen and Carol of the Bells, originally recorded by Savatage on the album Dead Winter Dead.
Samsung's Galaxy Camera, the manufacturer's first entry into the world of dedicated shooters powered by Android, was announced with little warning at IFA earlier this year. Besides Nikon's foray into the market, the Galaxy Camera is one of the only Android cameras we've yet seen. Frankly, of the two, Samsung's entry is the only one that seems worth looking at.
The question of how much longer point-and-shoot cameras can see success is a fair one – after all, DSLRs are becoming smaller and more affordable all the time, while smartphone cameras are reaching to fill the gap point-and-shoots would leave behind.
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.
As our lives fill up with screens, it becomes all the more important for them to work together. Today's YouTube update brings that dream a little closer to reality. Now, if you own a Google TV set top box and an Android device, you can use the latter to play, pause, or add videos to a playlist on the former. This is already possible for PS3 owners, so the expanded capability is a welcome addition.
The functionality works by automatically pairing your phone and set top box as long as they're connected to the same WiFi network. After that, simply tap the TV-shaped icon on any video and it will start playing on your big screen, with remote control options appearing on your handset.
The GoPro line of cameras are nifty little devices. These waterproof and shockproof cameras shoot 1080p video at 30fps and are compatible with a whole range of cool rugged accessories. As you film yourself in harrowing situations with a GoPro, you might not have the hands to properly operate it. That's where the new remote app comes into play.
Fire up the app, and you can stream the video output from the GoPro right to your screen. You'll need a reasonably fast Android device, and ICS or higher is recommended. You can also control recording, image capture, and settings all from within the app.
If you thought Google's official Ask Me Anythingvideo was a good promo for the new Nexus family, wait till you see this. A design studio called Autofuss (based in San Francisco) has created their own promo video for the Nexus 4, 7, and 10, that does a great job of showing off the new line. Take a look:
Not only is the thirty-second spot a pixel-perfect promo in terms of style, polish, and overall concept, but it stays true to Google's own Nexus branding, art style, and features copy that feels right at home in a promo made for Google.
The integration of all the services you use from your favorite search provider just keeps on getting better. Today, Google announced that you can now share content from your Google Drive directly to Google+. It's not just a matter of a simple link, either (unless you're on mobile). A built-in viewer for PDFs, videos, slideshow presentations and more make the experience virtually seamless.
To share to Google+, you simply click the Share button like normal where you'll find the new option waiting, in addition to the usual Gmail, Facebook, and Twitter. Of course, none of the other methods have quite this level of integration and ease of use.
Google Hangouts have been a great innovation in the world of easy broadcasting. If you're looking for something a bit more powerful, though, Livestream for Producers is a really great tool. The most recent update to the app brings cost-free and ad-free live streaming to an already-robust live blogging platform. Independent journalists should be thrilled.
Here's a list of some of the more specializes features you'll find in the app:
** Android App FEATURES **
- Broadcast Live video to your event page (Live Video) - Create a free, ad-free new livestream account - Manage your New Livestream Account (Create, delete, publish events) - Create event posters from iPhone photos (Live Event Page) - Post Photos which appear in real-time on your event page (Live blogging) - Post Videos which appear in real-time on your event page (Live blogging) - Post Text Updates which appear in real-time on your event page (Live blogging) - Remote control and preview of the Livestream Broadcaster Device (Live Video) - Moderate comments during live events and on archived posts - Built-in FTP server to receive live photos from Wifi equipped DSLR cameras.
At this point, the LG Nexus 4 is the most-leaked phone since, well, that other phone. Today a video from the carrier 3 in Sweden has popped up on YouTube with a near two minute look at the device, showing us around Android 4.2 a bit. The phone itself looks just like all the pictures we've seen. The video also confirms the Quick Settings menu Ron found. Conveniently, users will access it via a button, not a second pull-down shade.
Update: The video was pulled, but we've added a mirror. Once something's on the internet, it's there for good.