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Google announces WebM video format

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on May 19th, 2010

Some time ago Google purchased a company called On2 and many expected Google to open-source the VP8 video codec that came bundled with the company. Sure enough, Google has announced its new format called WebM, a video format that Google claims is efficient enough to be played on low-powered devices like netbooks, tablets and handheld devices.

WebM is open-source and licensed royalty-free under a BSD-style license. Many big names have already shown their support for WebM, including Firefox, Opera, Adobe, AMD, ARM, Broadcom, Freescale, NVIDIA, Qualcomm and Texas Instruments. Mozilla in particular has also decided to include support for it in the Firefox nightly builds from today, like Chromium, while Opera says that support is also on the way.

Google unveils Chrome web store

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on May 19th, 2010

Get ready to fill up your Chrome OS app page Google fans. Google just announced its new online web app store. Some of what they are showing off includes Dark Room for image editing, a nice version of TweetDeck, to name a few. Paid-for software will be offered. For instace Dark Room is $4.99.

Nothing on a launch date yet. Engadget says that the demo of Sports Illustrated’s interactive magazine is impressive, fully searchable with embedded video and “some pretty clever tricks” with geolocation. The web store for Chrome and Chrome OS will hit the dev channel very soon.

Google stops direct sales of Nexus One

Posted in Google by Shane McGlaun on May 17th, 2010

Google started selling its Nexus One handset directly to customers back in January. The handset didn’t exactly sell like hot cakes or the iPhone. The reason was that many users simply wanted to get hands on the device before buying it.

ITProPortal has announced that Google has officially stopped selling the Nexus One via its website direct to customers. The publication reports that Google will instead focus on selling the device through retailers.

Chevy Volt may be powered by Google soon

Posted in Automotive by Conner Flynn on May 12th, 2010

General Motors has found a technology partner to help extend the Chevy Volt’s futuristic OnStar functionality and Motor Trend says it’s Google. The company will reportedly “sell its Android operating system for in-car use.”

This is the first we’ve heard of Google selling Android, but GM doesn’t seem to mind. They’re ready to use the open-source OS anyway. This should help make GM cars more attractive to buyers and we can’t wait to see what kind of apps they come up with.

Google Tablet coming from Verizon

Posted in Tablet PC by Conner Flynn on May 11th, 2010

Make way for the first serious iPad competitor. According to Verizon Chief Exec Lowell McAdam, the carrier is working with Google on “a tablet computer.” The WSJ report is light on details as you might expect this early in the game, but Bloomberg scored the news that this tablet is said be Android-based, and that more details will be released later this week.

McAdam said that tablets are “part of the ‘next big wave of opportunities,’” and that Verizon’s “looking at all the things Google has in its archives that we could put on a tablet to make it a great experience.”. We should know more soon, but an Android/Verizon tablet already has us salivating.

Google search gets a new look

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on May 5th, 2010

Google has decided to introduce a new look to their search results, making it even easier to search for and find exactly what you’re looking for. There’s some simple left-hand navigation the new Google look, but we’ll let the video tell you all about it.

I’ll just say that I happened upon the changes by accident last night and was quite pleased with what I found. In general, contextually relevant, left-hand navigation has been added to the page, while the overall look and feel has also undergone some slight changes.

Google Store View gets official

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on April 22nd, 2010

Remember back in February when that retailer allowed google into their shop to take pictures of the place? Well, as it turns out, Google really does have plans to make easier for you to check out stores from your computer.

With Google Places, you can check out the interior of places like restaurants, cafes, hotels, spas, salon, gyms and retail stores, all from your computer. The pictures are taken by Google photographers who arrange a photo shoot with the business owners. Right now Google is running a trial in about 30 cities across the US, Australia and Japan.

Wii Game Ando Kensaku uses Google search results

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on April 7th, 2010

It’s a scenario old as Google itself. You have an argument and you settle it by comparing the number of Google search results. You wouldn’t think they could make a whole Wii game inspired by it, but they have done just that.

The game was developed in cooperation with Google and players have to choose which of the several search terms is most popular. There are 14 mini-games in total. Chances are it won’t be released outside of Japan, but for those in the land of the rising sun it will be out on the 29th of April.

Google Set-Top Box coming soon

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 18th, 2010

You knew that Google was looking to take over your living room at some point and the NYTimes has the details on Google TV, a platform to deliver web content to Android-based set-top boxes and TVs through partnerships with Sony, Intel, and Logitech.

Google hopes that the platform can succeed where many others have failed to seamlessly integrate web content onto TVs, bringing services like Twitter and sites like YouTube, and of course games, webapps, and more.

Google Mobile Search shows you what’s in stock nearby

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on March 11th, 2010

Google Product Search was already useful, but the addition of local inventory info makes it even better still. The new feature works on the iPhone and any PalmOS or Android device. Just search for Shopping results and Google will return not just pricing information for the item in question, but it will tell you which retailers have it nearby and whether they’ve got it in stock or not.

That saves you a trip and the cost of gas. The problem right now is that only a few retail partners are signed up. There are some major ones like Best Buy, Sears, and Williams-Sonoma, but the feature needs more participation from both big stores and local merchants. We are sure that will happen given some time.

AT&T removes Google for Yahoo Search on Motorola Backflip

Posted in AT&T by Conner Flynn on March 2nd, 2010

AT&T’s first Android phone won’t be shipping with Google Search. Instead, the Motorola Backflip’s home screen will feature a Yahoo Search widget, and the browser will run Yahoo searches by default. In fact it will be the first Android device with Yahoo as the main search engine.

Obviously appeasing Apple is high on AT&Ts priority list. We can’t really see what else this move does. It just says hey, we love Apple and fear them. There are four other AT&T Android phones coming soon, and we wonder if they will follow suit.

Nexus One Coming to Verizon in March

Posted in Rumors by Darrin Olson on February 27th, 2010

Google Nexus One coming to VerizonThe folks over at Neowin are stating an anonymous contact inside Google has provided them a tip that the Nexus One will be coming to Verizon on March 23rd. Google originally launched their first handset back in January from themselves only for $529, and very shortly after with T-Mobile for $179 with a 2-year contract.

When the Nexus One was launched the Google website stated it would be coming to the Verizon network sometime this spring but did not give an exact date. These rumors give it an exact date to coincide with the International CTIA wireless show in the United States, however pricing have not yet been provided.

New Google patent will really piss off Rupert Murdoch

Posted in Google by Shane McGlaun on February 26th, 2010

Rupert Murdoch hates Google. The publishing giant and Google have been at each other over Google’s book scanning program and the fact that Murdoch owns many of the newspapers whose stories are indexed by Google and then offered to readers free.

Murdoch thinks that we should all be thrilled to pay to read online news just as we pay for newspapers. Google has a new patent that will really make Murdoch unhappy. The patent is titled “Segmenting Printed Media Pages Into Articles.”

Google fiber network: 100x faster broadband

Posted in Google by Conner Flynn on February 10th, 2010

Google has announced the latest stage in their plans to accelerate broadband speeds, with a plan to offer 1 gigabit per second, fiber-to-the-home connections for between 50,000 and 500,000 people across the US. The planned service is described as “competitive” and the network would offer connections about 100 times the speed of the current average US broadband.

Once the new system is in place, Google is hoping to experiment with new uses of high-speed connectivity, like bandwidth-intensive apps and services, together with looking at the physical ways in which fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) is deployed.

Google Buzz Brings Social Widget to Gmail

Posted in Google by Darrin Olson on February 10th, 2010

The Google press conference we heard about on Tuesday, as expected, brought us a new social networking “widget” called Google Buzz. The new feature integrates into Google Gmail with almost no setup whatsoever and provides a way to share and keep up on information with friends or the general public.

By going to the Google Buzz website users can quickly add Buzz to there Gmail account where they can see a feed of posts from others and posts their own statuses, all integrated with the existing Gmail inbox. Users can choose to share these with just their closest friends through the application or to everyone. Google even gets users started by automatically having them follow the contacts they chat and email with currently through Gmail and Google Talk.