Category: Google


At last, you brave Droid X owners! That long-awaited day is finally here; you’re getting some Gingerbread tonight. Not feeling like being outdone by HTC, Motorola is rolling out the Gingerbread update to Droid X users as we speak. Members at the DroidXForums have confirmed that a “silent update” started rolling out a few minutes ago. The update process is pretty quick and painless, but those of you with modified software will have to restore to stock to get the update. Here are the many features Gingerbread will bring to your Droid X:

  • UI refinements for simplicity and speed
  • Faster, more intuitive text input
  • One-touch word selection and copy/paste
  • Improved power management
  • Control over applications. “Manage applications” shortcut in the Home menu
  • Native Internet calling support
  • Downloads app for downloads management
  • Many under the hood enhancements to speed and responsiveness

If you’re feeling a little adventurous today, you can manually update your Droid X by following the instructions here, but proceed at your own risk.

 

logitech-revue-football.jpg

 

Logitech’s Ashish Arora, VP and general manager of the big L’s Digital Home Group, this afternoon addressed the rumors that Google had asked for Google TV devices to not be shipped while they work on an software update to address a number of feature deficiencies. Says Arora:

Those familiar with our product know that we don’t need to modify the Logitech Revue box to deliver software enhancements. Each of our customers will receive periodic over-the-air updates whenever Google and Logitech release changes to the Google TV platform. Logitech Revue boxes purchased at launch in October, as a holiday gift in December or to follow basketball in the spring, will all be the same and will all benefit from the same software updates.

Logitech and Google continue to have a collaborative, effective working relationship as we listen to consumer feedback and work together on enhancements to the Google TV platform. We at Logitech are enthusiastic about Google TV and our role in bringing this new platform to U.S. consumers.

All true. The Revue set-top box is updated just like any other Android device. (In fact, the update looks exactly like any other Android device.) But we couldn’t help but notice that there’s really nothing in there (or the two other paragraphs we didn’t quote) that addresses whether Google asked (or told) Logitech to not ship Revues while the software situation’s sorted out. We agree that to do so might be a tad over the top. While the entire Google TV experience still has a lot of room to grow (read into that what you will), there’s still plenty of functionality that can be had out of the box.

So the question remains: Did Google pressure Logitech and others to halt shipping in favor of an update? Possible. And the Revue currently is out of stock. We’re not sure how long it’s been unavailable. Could be that it’s simply sold out, could be otherwise.

Arora closes with “After a brief holiday break, Logitech’s Revue team will be heading to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in early January, where we look forward to demonstrating how Google TV is transforming the TV-watching experience.

 

Android credit card

One of the biggest drawbacks to Google’s Android Market, and possibly one of the aspects of the OS that most frequently drives users to app piracy, is the fact that there are so few countries with access to paid apps.  Google is looking to change that, though, with the news that they’re expanding paid app availability to 12 more countries: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Finland, Hong Kong, Israel, Mexico, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Singapore and South Africa.  In addition, there are reports that Sweden and Hungary are beginning to see paid apps appear in the Market.

This is great news for Android fans and developers alike, and I’m sure Google is pleased to open up the Android platform to more interested devs.  I’m just surprised it’s taken this long for the big G to enable paid apps beyond thescant number of countries that have been available up until now.  After all, the Android Market has been available foralmost two years now.  All that aside, I’m excited to see Android paid apps available to a multitude of new users, which means more devs, more apps, and better quality all around.

Samsung Galaxy Tab

DALLAS, September 16, 2010 —Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile)1, the No. 1 mobile phone provider in the U.S., today announced the upcoming availability of the Galaxy Tab™ in the U.S with AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless. The first mobile tablet from Samsung shares many of the powerful characteristics of the Galaxy S smart phone lineup that launched this summer. The Galaxy Tab is designed with several enhancements to create a unique mobile experience that other products can’t deliver.


For all you buzz users out there (yes, they do exist), Google has added the ability to edit comments and posts to the mobile version.  Mobile users will now see an “edit” button, which you can use to edit posts and comments like you’ve been doing on the desktop all along.  So, feel free to make as many errors as you’d like, because you can go back and fix every last one of them.

If you rely heavily on Google Voice, as we do, but don’t have an Android handset — preventing you from leveraging the superb Voice app — we have good news. Google has added the ability to send missed call notification emails directly to your email address of choice. As the Google Voice Blog explains: “Starting today, whenever you miss a call, you can see a notification in your Google Voice inbox, or receive an email notification, or both. This setting can be turned on and off from the Calls tab in the Settings menu.” The feature is live and ready to be used. Enjoy.

I will just come out and say it : I love Google Calendar (and all of Google’s online apps for that matter). Using the “tasks” feature in Gmail and Google Calendar makes sure I never miss a due date to bad memory. That being said, you cannot access these tasks from within your calendar app on the phone. So, how is one to check paper due dates on the go?

The method I have gotten into using is not quite as elegant as I would like, but it works.

  1. Create a task in Gmail or Google Calendar using your computer’s browser
  2. Open up your phone’s browser and point it togmail.com/tasks (only works in mobile browsers)
  3. You may have to enter your login information. Make sure to check “remember me”
  4. You should now see your task(s)
  5. Bookmark the site; I named it “tasks”
  6. Put the bookmark onto your home screen of choice (can be done by long-pressing on the bookmark from within the browser or long-pressing on your home screen and going through the menus)

You should now have a quick and easy way to view and edit your tasks. Now, if only Google would integrate tasks into the calendar app on the phone…

Analysts want to see what the next big thing is going to be from Google.  Sure Google does a brisk business with advertising against search, but what other area of their business has real revenue growth potential?

When consumers buy through a Google search, Google stands to make a percentage.

Google’s (GOOGITA acquisition has Bank of America/Merrill Lynch’s Justin Post thinking that Google may be looking at product search as on such area:

These changes are transforming Google into a more competitive, closer-to-the-transaction eCommerce platform, with the potential benefit of: 1) bettering traffic share gains and 2) improving conversion rates (up to 30% in some formats), leading to higher CPCs.

How much could Google make?  Post thinks that squeezing eCommerce intermediaries out of their referral fees could net Google as much as $1-2 billion annually over the next three years out of the rapidly expanding $10 billion global market.

Google’s Product search product takes any of the millions of Google queries daily and matches it to various products in their database.  If the user is interested in buying that product, Google can make a percentage.

While Google doesn’t currently rank results by what kind of commission they would receive, they could potentially start to do this, increasing their revenue from product search.

Post notes:

Product Search has evolved to become the number one comparison shipping site. While Product Search has the potential to provide incremental monetization of $200 to $300 million per year, it is more likely that Google will continue to use Product Search data feeds to help funnel merchant data to higher value ad formats.

So even if Google doesn’t make any money on product searches, the eyeballs they get are still worth significant money in advertising.
Google’s Q2 Earnings Report will be on webcast later this week.

These changes are transforming Google into a more competitive, closer-to-the-transaction eCommerce platform, with the potential benefit of: 1) bettering traffic share gains and 2) improving conversion rates (up to 30% in some formats), leading to higher CPCs.

via: google 24/7

Move over, Kobo — following the promise of a Summer launch, Amazon’s Kindle app for Android is now live, bringing the usual array of features that existing Kindle users will hold near and dear: access to the Kindle store right from the app, adjustable font sizes, free book samples, and most importantly, wireless bookmark synchronization with your entire stable of Kindle-equipped devices (because we know you’ve all got an iPad, iPhone, and physical Kindle lying around somewhere). The app requires Android 1.6 to operate, which is going to leave a few people in the lurch — but it’s always good to have a compelling reason to upgrade hardware, is it not?

Not wanting to be left out, Sprint announced this morning that it’s working on the Android 2.2 update, and that the Evo 4G will get it.

As work on finalizing the software is under way, Sprint expects to launch Android 2.2 in the near future. It also will be available as an upgrade on the recently launched HTC EVO 4G.

With the Android 2.2 upgrade, customers can expect improvements to include the following benefits: updates to user interface, improved EAS Support, improved browser performance, including Flash 10x Support, voice dialing over Bluetooth and application storage on external memory.

No exact date on when we’ll start seeing  updates roll out — they say “in the near future — so we’ll all have to sit patiently and wait. Let us know how that works out for ya. [Sprint]