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Google pulls GrooveShark music streaming service from Android Market

Posted in Android by Conner Flynn on April 7th, 2011

The already controversial GrooveShark music streaming service is not finding it easy with mobile platform vendors. GrooveShark’s mobile music streaming application was already booted out of Apple’s App Store last year, and now they have been booted from Google.

GrooveShark for Android was removed from the Android Market this week. But don’t worry, the GrooveShark for Android application is still available from the company’s website and can be installed on any Android device that allows sideloading. The iPhone version is also available, though only installable on jailbroken devices. It ain’t easy getting your mobile Grooveshark on. It seems there are too many sharks in the water and not enough chum.

Google adding a +1 button to search results

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 30th, 2011

+1 is making its way into Google search results. This means that soon you will be able to “rate” links or ads you find useful and this will be used to tell your friends about the value of that site. Recommendations are filtered to make them as relevant as possible, while people within your social sphere (Gmail etc) get a higher priority.

This will no doubt help Google to improve their social network side and maybe stick it to Facebook just a little bit. The +1 button will start with English Google search and ads soon. Me? I give it a -1. Are we replacing relevancy with popularity? Probably not since Google wouldn’t want to kill it’s moneymaker, but still, this seems like a road better not taken. Popularity does not equal relevancy. I guess we will all see how this goes.

Google and LG working on a “Nexus Tablet”?

Posted in Tablet PC by Conner Flynn on March 28th, 2011

We’ve had Google Android phones since late 2007 and the first Google phone came from working with HTC on the Google Nexus One which launched last year. This year the Google Nexus S arrived from Google and Samsung. So they like to partner up. The latest rumor is that Google is working on its first Nexus-branded tablet with another friend.

According to Mobile Review, Google is working with LG on a Google Nexus Tablet. Of course this tablet will run Google Android 3.0 Honeycomb and it might launch as early as this summer or early in the fall. It is likely that Google would make sure that the tablet would get software updates earlier than third party tablets.

Google gets a patent for Google Doodle

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 23rd, 2011

After almost 10 years, Google has won a patent for its “Google Doodles”. The patent is titled “Systems and methods for enticing users to access a web site” and protects Google’s system of changing a company logo to go along with a special event. Google co-founder Sergey Brin is said to be the inventor of the system.

A patent on doodles might seem a bit silly for a company like Google, but since we all associate the practice with that company, it’s a good thing for them that they now have a patent.

Google Smart Labels helps you sort your email

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 9th, 2011

Google has announced a new way to automatically sort out the mail in your Gmail account, with Smart Labels. Gmail already lets you create your own labels if you want to label your mail, but if you want it done automatically Smart Labels will do the job. You get 3 new labels in all: Bulk, Forums and Notifications.

Gmail will detect which emails fit into those categories and label them accordingly. Emails labeled Bulk are things like newsletters and promotions, while Notifications are account statements and receipts. Forums are group mailing lists that you are subscribed to. Pretty simple stuff. If a message doesn’t get labeled correctly, you can fix it and even tell Google so they can improve the system.

Google fixes infected Android phones

Posted in Android by Conner Flynn on March 6th, 2011

Google on Saturday said that it was taking extra action to patch up a large-scale Android malware infection that highlighted the risks of the platform. They have pulled the apps and are now pushing an automatic update to compromised phones that will remove the privacy hacks.

If you are affected, you will get an e-mail first to let you know of the problem and a second after it gets patched, according to security head Rich Cannings. The company is also adding a “number of measures” in the Market to prevent more hostile apps like those in question and is working with phone makers and other partners to cure the root causes.

Gmail issues now resolved by Google

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 3rd, 2011

According to an official announcement from Google, the recent issues involving a number of Gmail users who lost all of their old emails has been resolved. They claimed it was fixed a few days after it came to light, but it hadn’t been completely fixed, as a number of Gmail users were still without access to their old emails.

Now however, Google’s latest statement says that all of these issues should be fixed, but if anybody still has problems with Gmail, they should contact Google. It’s a good lesson to learn about not completely relying on cloud computing. Offline backups of your email might be a good idea.

Google to bring more live sports coverage to YouTube

Posted in YouTube by Conner Flynn on February 23rd, 2011

After some successful trials, streaming live cricket matches and special events, Google is now looking to expand its live coverage of sports events on YouTube. The company is currently in talks with the NBA and NHL to stream games live. Basketball and Hockey fans would be very pleased to see that.

Throughout its live streaming trials Google data showed that during the Indian Premier League live cricket coverage, users spent on average around 40 minutes watching each game. Compare that with an average of 15 minutes per user viewing videos on YouTube at other times. You can see why they are interested.

Google investing into Celebrity YouTube Channels

Posted in YouTube by Conner Flynn on February 21st, 2011

Hollywood may be using Youtube a bit more soon if Google’s plans to invest in Celebrity YouTube Channels pays off. Google wants to expand its celebrity channels by offering already established stars $5 million dollars to create their own YouTube channel. Google wants to invest $100 million dollars in the project, backing 20 celebrities. The $5 million investment by Google would would cover salaries, production values, and give the celebrity full ownership of the YouTube show.

The company will need to proceed carefully, to make sure that they don’t alienate the existing community of users. It will be interesting to see what happens.

Google’s Social Search updated

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on February 17th, 2011

Google has updated their social search feature, and now social search results will appear within normal search results. Previously social search results only appeared at the bottom of the page. Google has also made other changes to its social search and it will now integrate search results from Twitter, Flickr and YouTube.

They have added notes for links people have shared on Twitter and other sites. Previously, they would show you results people created and linked through their Google profiles. Now, if someone you’re connected to has publicly shared a link, they may show that link in results.

Google wants to plan your wedding

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on February 12th, 2011

Google has seemingly invaded every aspect of our lives and now it has rolled out a site to help you create your own wedding, edit photos and plan the wedding using Google’s tools, like Sites, Docs and Picnik.

Google teamed up with wedding planner Michelle Rago for the templates. She also provides tips for the couple. There’s also a wedding sweepstakes for $25,000 and the chance to get Rago help plan your wedding. Sounds crazy. Would you use this?

White Nexus S coming soon to Vodafone

Posted in Mobile Phones by Conner Flynn on February 8th, 2011

That White Nexus S that we told you about last month, which showed up in European retailer’s listings, just got confirmed for Vodafone.

It’s a white Nexus S and it is headed for Vodafone. That’s all we’ve got since details are scarce aside from that. Vodafone simply says that the phone is “coming soon,” and that it will be the only carrier to offer the phone in white, at least in the UK. So which of you Brits are getting one?

Google launches Android Blogger App

Posted in Android by Conner Flynn on February 4th, 2011

Google has launched its official Blogger App and released it to the Android Market. It allows you to easily publish posts with pictures, labels and location information directly to your Blogger blog from your Android device. It requires Android 2.1 and up.

The app also makes it easier to manage several websites with support for multiple sites allowing you to easily switch between blogs within the app when you need. There’s also an offline feature that lets you write posts even when a data connection isn’t available. Photos taken on your smartphone camera can be imported directly to your posts as well and uploaded straight from your Android phone.

Google pays $10 million for fflick

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on January 25th, 2011

$10 million to Google is like $1 for us. Just a drop in the bucket. That’s how much the company paid to buy movie recommendation site fflick. It looks like this is a strategic move to boost its upcoming YouTube movie service. It is a movie recommendation site after all.

The deal is currently in progress and will help Google gain access to a Twitter-based sentiment engine that is capable of gauging whether viewers prefer a particular movie or whether it has recieved enough pre-release momentum. It isn’t clear whether fflick will survive as an independent company or will be consumed wholly by the almighty Google. The buyout should be announced formally before the week is over.

Google’s Cr-48 Chrome notebook now ships with stickers

Posted in Notebooks by Conner Flynn on January 25th, 2011

Remember Google’s Cr-48 Chrome notebook? Maybe you thought that the notebook looked too much like every other notebook out there. Well, fear not. Google has come up with a cheap gimmick to make it stand out from the pack.

Looks like the notebook is shipping with stickers that you can put on it. They are very colorful and obviously Chrome themed. The one above looks really nice. Maybe this will start a new trend of colorful laptop lids from manufacturers if they all start shipping stickers.