13
Sep
googlemapsnewicon
Last Updated: March 12th, 2013

While we still wait for newer products like Play Movies or Play Books to reach a wider audience, Google's been hard at work bringing a slightly more useful product to additional countries: Google Maps with Navigation. After bringing voice navigation to India, nine more new countries are being added to the supported list for the Navigation beta. Including the following:

  • Egypt
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Qatar
  • Kuwait
  • Lebanon
  • Bahrain
  • Jordan
  • Algeria

nav nav[3]

Unfortunately, the service will require Android 4.0 or higher.

10
Sep
walletprepaid

Well, that just came right the flip out of nowhere. Google just sent out an email informing Google Wallet users that, as of September 17th, you will no longer be able to add funds to your Google Prepaid Card. After that, you have one month to spend any remaining balance, before it's no longer available. You can still receive a refund for the balance here, though, so Google's not just stealing your money.

10
Sep
drive tiny

Before I get your hopes up, no they haven't improved spreadsheets yet. However, that is on the way. What is arriving now, though, is the ability to add comments to your documents, view tables, and improved Google presentations viewing support. You'll even get speaker notes and the ability to swipe between slides.

There are more features on their way. Here at Android Police HQ, we've been eagerly awaiting proper spreadsheet editing (which is currently horrible to an unusable degree), and Google has seen fit to name check that very feature in its "More to come..." section.

04
Sep
nexusae0_face-unlock_thumb

Today it was learned, through a US Patent and Trademark Office filing, that Google has been granted a patent concerning the logging in of multiple users by facial recognition.

Typically, the granting of yet another tech patent wouldn't be extraordinarily interesting news. But given the fact that Google's latest patent relates to multiple user support, and the fact that code meant for multiple user support has been sitting right under our noses in AOSP for some time now, patent number 8,261,090 is definitely worth discussing.

30
Aug
playstorelogo

It looks like Google has added a new feature to the Play Store on devices that will recommend apps to users based on personalized criteria. In a new section, you can find apps that have been +1'd by your friends, apps that are popular in your area, and even apps that are "popular with similar users" based on some undisclosed criteria.

recommend1 recommend2 recommend3

The feature mirrors a similar recommendation feature that's been live on the web version of the Play Store for at least a month now.

29
Aug
maps logo

Update: Not only does the update address the reboot issues, but it also brings about a very useful new feature: cycling directions for 10 different countries (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK)! This includes full turn-by-turn, voice-guidance in Maps Navigation for all 12 supported countries (all previously mentioned, plus the U.S. and Canada), as well. Getting around on your bike has never been easier!

23
Aug
unnamed (1)

Last week, after Google Maps received a public transit-minded update, it became apparent that the app wasn't playing nice with the HTC Rezound. Befuddled user reports spilled in, relaying tales of inexplicable reboots and crashes. As always, the community found a solution but, unfortunately, the only solution ended up being the "uninstall updates" button.

T-Mobile today acknowledged the Maps update's issues with certain handsets, posting a support document related to the HTC Sensation 4G's problems with the app.

22
Aug
googlemusictiny

A bunch of new fun stuff is coming down the pipeline, Google-fans! Your favorite search giant has just pushed several updates to some of its headlining properties, including Play Music, Play Magazines, and Google Goggles. We've got the full rundown for you.

Play Music

For starters, Google Music has added expandable notifications to its repertoire. It doesn't look like you'll see much more info if you expand it, but Play Music continues to be one of the best examples of how to make notifications robust and useful.

22
Aug
image

In a post to Google's Mobile Ads blog today, YouTube Group Project Manager Phil Farhi announced that those pre-video, skippable advertisements you've seen on YouTube (they're officially called TrueView in-stream video ads) are quick on their way to mobile devices.

Fahri cites greater ROI as the primary benefit of multi-platform ad exposure through YouTube and its associated mobile experiences, also noting that "today, most of us watch video on our smartphones and tablets, as well as our PCs." This consumption-oriented behavior pattern's spread across multiple platforms effectively opens the door for what Fahri calls "multi-screen campaigns," which not only expose viewers to an advertiser's campaign across multiple devices, but also – and perhaps more importantly – improves brand recall.

21
Aug
playstoregiftcard

We'd previously heard that Play Store Gift Cards are set to arrive officially on August 26th. While that may be true for stores that are still waiting on their shipments (read: not Target), Google has decided to take the wraps off of the whole thing ahead of time. The elusive URL we've seen floating around for a gift card landing page is now live. As well as that support page we found last night.

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