Tag: google

By January 17, 2014 Read More →

Google Glass wearing driver escapes prosecution

abadieIn what was the first case of motorist being stopped and given a ticket for wearing Google Glass while driving the defendant was found not guilty in a San Diego court yesterday.

The court ruled that Cecilia Abadie was not guilty as she had been cited under a code that makes it illegal to watch or use video or TV on the front of a vehicle while it is moving. Under the code it is a requirement that there be proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the device was in operation. This is something that the officer that stopped the defendant was not able to provide.

This seems like a positive outcome for Google and supporters of Google Glass, like me. However, Commissioner John Blair did state, following the ruling, that the he felt that there is sufficient scope in the code that bans the use of TV and Video to include Google Glass.

Whilst this ruling may not in itself set a legal precedent relating to the legality of Google Glass and usage while driving and this is likely to rumble on for some time to come until there is a definitive ruling and laws passed.

 

Posted in: News
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By December 16, 2013 Read More →

Google Glass unboxing video

Google Glass unboxing videoGoogle Glass has been around for a little while now with early ‘Explorer Edition’ versions being made available to a select few testers and developers at the beginning of 2013. Over the past few months the Explorer programme has been further extended and I’ve now been lucky enough to have been invited to join and have just now received my very own Google Glass. Excited is not the word…

Google Glass has been a little controversial of late and there have been some privacy concerns, in fact some shops and restaurants going so far as to ban their use. Part of my desire to use Glass is to consider these issues myself and I’ll be talking about this more as I get to use it more.

So as is always the way with any new tech I get my hands on, I’ve recorded a short unboxing video for your viewing pleasure. You’ll notice that I’m not in my normal studio environment recording this one, I’m in a hotel having just picked the Glass up. As a result, there is some noise for the first minute and 10 seconds, so I hope that doesn’t detract from the video too much.

Google Glass Unboxing video

Google Glass Specification:

  • Dual-core 1GHz OMAP CPU*
  • 1GB RAM (682MB available to developers)*
  • OS: Android 4.0.4
  • 3 axis gyroscope
  • 3 axis accelerometer
  • 3 axis magnetometer (compass)
  • Touchpad Control
  • Bone Conductor Speaker
  • 16GB Storage/ 12GB Free
  • 1 Day Battery Life
  • Voice Control
  • WiFi 802.11b/g
  • Bluetooth
  • Titanium Headband
  • 5MP Camera
  • 720P video recording
  • 640×360 display

* Specs for the CPU and RAM are not totally clear, has been a lot of contradictory information so we’re going with the consensus.

 

Other than the touchpad, Google Glass can be controlled using “voice actions”. To activate Glass, wearers tilt their heads 30° upward (which can be altered for preference) or tap the touchpad, and say “O.K., Glass.” Once Glass is activated, wearers can say an action, such as “Take a picture”, “Record a video”, “Hangout with [person/Google+ circle]“, “Google ‘What year was Wikipedia founded?’”, “Give me directions to the Eiffel Tower”, and “Send a message to John”

By November 24, 2013 Read More →

What has Google been up to?

google-appsGoogle are busy as always tinkering with their massive array of products and we are going to have a quick look at what has been modified, moved and removed from Google’s catalogue. The Nexus 5 is out, most of us are on Android 4.4, is Google sitting back and having a rest? Nope.

Chromecast 

teaser_google_chromecast_appGoogle has recent made small alterations to their Chromecast app. It’s still the configuration app for the Chromecast HDMI stick, however, the recent update is easing navigation, improves time zone display, displays the Chromecast MAC address and fixes a crash when launching device settings screen.

Google Play

teaser_google_playWe have seen a roll-out of some previously announced changes for the Google Play store that are said to make it even easier for tablet users to discover apps and games – designed and optimized for Android tablets. However, unlike Google’s integration on Google TV, where users only see for Google TV developed apps, in this case Google is first presenting tablet optimized apps by showing tablet users a “Designed for tablets” section as the default view in top lists.

Google Play Newsstand

teaser_google_play_newsstandWe can say goodbye to Google Play Magazines and the beastly Google Play Currents Android apps. With Google Play Newsstand users can discover more of the news and magazines they care about, all in one app for Android tablet or phone. It displays breaking news and in-depth articles featuring audio, video and more. From sports, business, cooking, entertainment, fashion and more – Google Play Newsstand offers both, free and paid news plus the ability to subscribe to full HD magazines. With hundreds of premier publishers – it’s all there, easy to follow, read, and share. In addition, it allows to add own own news channels, for instance from RSS feeds or Google Play Currents.

Google Translate

teaser_google_translateGoogle has announced Google Translate is to launch a new Google Translate app for Android. The app is now featuring faster and simpler speech translations, additional language support and a sleek new look. Google Translate for Android works as before, all it needs is to open the Translate app and press the microphone icon. Google has also added gesture support now, so with a simple turn of the screen, it’s possible to switch back and forth between languages.

Google RSA migration

chrome-security-logoGoogle‘s security engineer Dan Dulay announced that the tech giant has successfully upgraded all its SSL certificates to the longer 2048-bit RSA. Google has sought to strengthen its SSL certificates by switching from 1024-bit to 2048-bit RSA keys. Doubling the key length will, hopefully, make it much harder to crack the encryption of sensitive data such as banking transactions, email, and others. The company announced in May that it has started the migration and expects to finish by the end of the year. It seems that Google has managed to finish earlier and will now start the next phase, that of issuing 2048-bit certificates for its websites and online services.

Posted in: Apps & Games, News, Phones, Tablets
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By November 20, 2013 Read More →

Google to release Nexus wireless charger in UK

Nexus-wireless-charger-640x318If you have a Nexus 4, 5 or or the Nexus 7 tablet you are going to be wanting one of these. A Nexus Wireless charger. Appearing just in time for the holiday rush this would be almost the perfect present for a Nexus user. The charger has already been launched in the US at $50, however, here in the UK we have merely have a “coming soon” listed.

This will undoubtedly be a big hit for those in the Nexus fanclub. This isn’t the only option for wireless charging the Nexus devices, as they use a Qi standard, there are cheaper alternatives out there. The purists out there will have to pick one there up though as this one comes with Nexus branding.

With the Nexus Wireless Charger, your new Nexus 7 becomes the first truly wireless tablet. No more messing with wires, cords and plugs – your tablet just snaps into place on the magnetic face and begins charging. The Nexus Wireless Charger adheres securely to any surface – like your desk, counter top or nightstand – so the convenience of grab-and-go charging is always within easy reach.

Posted in: News, Phones
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By November 14, 2013 Read More →

Thousands Petition new YouTube Comment System

youtube-logoYou may have heard that recently YouTube started to revamp their comment system. Initially this sounded like a good idea – integrate YouTube comments with Google+, stop the reubbish and spam comments that many YouTube’rs suffer.

In itself that doesn’t sound like a big deal. However, here’s the rub, Google have decided to enforce the Google+ commenting system to the point that you MUST have a Google+ account in order to post a comment on a YouTube video.

YouTube channel owners, myself included, have become so angry with the change that an online petition has been started and it already has well over 100,000 signatures. Those signing the petition are demanding that the comment system be returned to its previous form.

“Google is forcing us to make Google+ accounts and invading our social life to comment on a YouTube video and trying to take away our anonymous profile. They are also trying to censor us unless we share the same worldview as they do.”

We’ve seen the comments on our YouTube videos fall to almost zero since the change where previously we’d have dozens daily. Furthermore, we’ve noticed that people can comment on our videos yet we’re unable to reply to those comments despite them appearing on our channel!

I’m actually a fan of Google+ and I like the idea but it would be better if it could be phased in or where channel owners could make the G+ account optional for viewer comments.

via The Enquirer

Posted in: Editorial
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By November 13, 2013 Read More →

Nexus 7 gets KitKat

Nexus 7 gets KitKatWith the obvious success of the Nexus 5, Google is managing to get Android 4.4 KitKat in to the hands of more users.

That’s left many existing Android users wondering when their devices will have a KitKat update available. Several manufacturers have already made announcements and we know, for example, that HTC are going to have updates out later this month.

If you have a Nexus 7 though, you are definitely in luck! The Nexus 7 (both the 2012 and 2013 versions) and Nexus 10 will be getting the update imminently, although it’ll be exclusive to the Wi-Fi only models for now.

I’m checking for updates on my Nexus 7 ever 5 minutes!

Google have also announced that the Nexus 4 will get the update to KitKat soon too.

 

By November 12, 2013 Read More →

Google Chromecast demo video

chromecastSeveral weeks ago, Gareth was one of the lucky few to be able to order a Chromecast from Amazon.com and have it delivered to the UK.

We then brought you a video of the install and setup of the Chromecast but Gareth encountered a series of problems when trying to use the Chromecast with both his tablet and his phone and was unable to get it fully working.

So this time we’re bringing you an updated video of the Chromecast in action now that we’ve been able to iron out the issues and in the video below you’ll see Gareth demo some of the features and run through a demo.

By November 8, 2013 Read More →

Google’s Android looks to be spreading faster than believed

mobile-makeover-android-dominanceAndroid fans already know that Google’s operating system quickly spread across the world, conquering everything in its path; however, this latest analysis suggests it spread even more quickly than we could have imagined as PhoneArena has recently pointed out. According to Horace Dediu, an Asymco analyst, it turns out that Android is the fastest growing technology product in history! The metric he used to determine this was a comparison of total adoption numbers across specific time-frames after an initial launch. Here are a few mobile stats to put it in perspective:

  • Symbian hit 450 million users in 44 quarters (11 years)
  • BlackBerry hit 225 million users in 43 quarters (about 11 years)
  • Windows Mobile hit 72 million in 30 quarters
  • Apple’s iOS hit 700 Million users in only 23 Quarters (almost 6 years)
  • Android hit 1 Billion users in only 20 quarters (5 years)

The pic above charts some other devices throughout the history of tech. It’s interesting to take a glance at the Android & iOS versus PC Sales. The huge spike is something the PC industry never had. Of course, it’s not a perfect apples to apples comparison, but it’s still worth noting. There’s one other thing worth noting in the infographic. Despite the massive acceleration of adoption, there are still quite a few people left in the world who still don’t have smartphones. In China we are only 34% into their total market, and even in the United States we are only a little over half way there.

Posted in: News, Phones, Tablets
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By November 6, 2013 Read More →

Google Hangouts expanded to Helpouts

helpouts_large_verge_medium_landscapeTonight, Matt and I will attempt out first Mobile Tech Addicts hangout, a chance to engage with you, the loyal reader and listener. Hangouts have really opened up a new age in VOIP / Video calling / conferencing. In addition to Hangouts there is also a new service Google are offering, Google Helpouts.

Google Helpouts it is already live and available on the desktop or Android platforms. Google Helpouts basically allows you to use Google Hangouts in a new way. The goal is to offer people a place to get help on a vast variety of topics using Google Hangouts. This could include topics from DIY repairs, to computer tech support, to cooking and much more. The possibilities are nearly endless.

Google Helpouts basically allows folks to help each other either for free or for a fee. What’s truly unique about this is that instead of getting a random person, you actually have the power to choose from whom you get help based upon a variety of factors like availability, qualifications, ratings, price, and reviews. Here’s a full quote below from Google’s blog on their new Helpouts service. You can also find out more in the video below.

Quote:

What if getting help for a computer glitch, a leaky pipe, or a homework problem was as easy as clicking a button? What if you could connect via real-time video to a music teacher or a yoga instructor from the comfort of your home? What if you could get someone knowledgeable to get you “unstuck” when you really need it?Today, we’re announcing Helpouts—a new way to get and give help over live video. Our goal is simple: help people help each other. We want to use the convenience and efficiency of the web to enable everyone, no matter where they are or what time it is, to easily connect with someone who can help.

Help might be a quick answer to a problem you’re having right now, like how to fix your garage door, or how to remove a computer virus; or it might be guidance completing a project, like building a deck. It might be learning a new skill, like how to speak conversational French or how to draw cartoons; or it might be general advice on how to improve your fitness or your writing (I could use this right now).

With Helpouts, you can choose who you get help from based on their qualifications, their availability, their price, their ratings and reviews. You can connect instantly or book in advance. You can get help from individuals or from brands you already know and trust, like Sephora, One Medical, Weight Watchers, Redbeacon (a Home Depot company), and Rosetta Stone. Once you’re in a Helpout, you can do more than just talk—you can share your computer screen, collaboratively edit a presentation, or record your Helpout. And if the experience doesn’t meet your expectations, we offer a full money back guarantee.

Today is just the beginning. We’re starting small and in a few categories. The number of people giving help on Helpouts and the type of help available will grow over time. Helpouts may not be suitable for every occasion, and it will take time to get used to interactions via real time video. We hope that the efficiency, convenience and global reach of Helpouts will make people’s lives easier in the long term.

We hope you’ll give Helpouts a try and give us your feedback through ratings and reviews, or talk to us on Google+, Twitter or Facebook. And if you’re interested in giving help on Helpouts yourself, let us know.

By November 2, 2013 Read More →

Nexus 5 benchmark video

Nexus 5 benchmarkIn my Nexus 5 unboxing and hands on video yesterday, I ran a quick benchmark test on the Nexus 5 using Quadrant. As I mentioned in that video, the Nexus 5 benchmark scores seem to be a bit ‘off’ and I suspect that this is largely down to Quadrant not being updated for Android 4.4 KitKat yet, giving us some false values, although the graph seemed to be about right, the numbers were wrong.

So, further to several requests that I’ve had over the past few hours, here is the Nexus 5 running an AnTuTu benchmark. You’ll be able to see for yourself how it runs and what the final score is be watching the short video below.

The Nexus 5 is now coming along with me as my everyday phone and I’ll keep you posted on my experience with it. If you have any questions please submit them below.

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