Google and LG working on a smartwatch to be previewed next month, announced in June

google_lg_logoExpect the battle for smartwatch supremacy to really get interesting in just a few months. It is being reported that Google will be unveil its smartwatch plans next month, with an actual announcement coming in June at Google I/O. And like they do with their Nexus, Google will not be manufacturing the hardware. Instead, LG will step up to the plate. Google is very happy with the job LG has done with the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 that tasking them with a smartwatch was an easy choice. The software for the smartwatch is believed to be based on Google Now, much like Google Glass.

In the middle of the night, @evleaks than tweeted a statement aligning itself with the previously stated announcement date. He said “Apparently Google’s smartwatch is being made by LG, and will launch at I/O.” Does he know something we don’t? Probably. But we’ll just have to keep waiting until more information trickles out until next month when Google is said to give a preview of the smartwatch.
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Google Barge project to be moved to a new location within a month

Google-Barge

According to a new report by CNET, Google is set to move the Google barge docked at Treasure Island’s Pier One within a month. The barge is a floating showroom made out of shipping containers which would feature new technologies. The California state agency said Google was informed to either file a construction permit or move its construction project to another location.

It seems Google refused to file a permit and instead, chose to move its project to a different location. The barge project has been put on hold for quite some time now due to issues raised by several government groups. When the project is completed, the barge will serve as a showroom while the top deck will serve as a “party” area.

Via: 9TO5Google

Youtube has a new, cleaner interface

youtube_layoutYouTube announced that they are in the process of rolling out some changes to their video network’s interface that will help users navigate the site more easily. The layout is center aligned, the header is sticky, and the guide sidebar is now a “hamburger”-Android-style menu that includes your playlists, subscriptions and more.

Playlists also take more of a presence in the new layout, with your guide now featuring all of the playlists that you have created, as well as playlists from other channels you have liked.

Source: Google System Blog

Here’s another glimpse of what Project Tango can do

Project Tango

Google has unveiled Project Tango, a 3D sensing smartphone, which can make computer vision and perceptual computing solutions like software that maps and creates 3D reconstructions of indoor spaces.

Matterport, the company behind Project Tango’s software (and now working with Google), will be present at Mobile World Congress next week, so we’ll be hearing a lot from them in the next few days.

The software is brilliant, and as you’ll see in the video, pretty accurate as well as it maps an actual room using a Project Tango prototype. There is certainly some room (no pun intended) to grow for this project, but it’s an enormous start. The possibilities are nearly limitless for this type of software, so it’ll be exciting to see how Google and Matterport move ahead here.

Hit the break for the video.


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Google looking into WiFi app that automatically logs users into Google WiFi hotspots

Google Wifi

Google’s latest attempt at giving you free WiFi is coming in the form of Starbucks’ WiFi hotspots. Starbucks currently uses AT&T’s wireless service to give customers internet access, but Google is internally considering moving to put their own high-speed access into the 7000 Starbucks stores across the US. Google also wants to shorten up the tedious process of finding a hotspot, opening a browser, and accepting terms and conditions before finally being able to actually use the internet.

To accomplish this, Google is testing out an app that cuts that process down. The app would handle all of the encryption and authentication of a Google hotspot, so just by having it installed on your Android or iOS device, you could automatically connect to wireless internet whenever you were in range. 
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The next generation of smartphones is here: Google’s Project Tango

Project_Tango_Prototype_01

When Google sold Motorola to Lenovo, they kept the Advanced Technology and Projects group, which we know was working on Project Ara. Well, something else has been in the cooker as well: Google’s Project Tango. According to the leader of Project Tango, Johnny Lee, it is something they “have been working quietly on over the past year.”

Project Tango is a very unique smartphone that uses a motion tracking camera and depth sensor that can detect the 3D world that we live in. It can learn the dimensions of rooms and spaces, including your entire house. Can you say augmented reality? Imagine playing a game in your own home with other characters. It’s also perfect for directions beyond the street level, such as a mall or an unfamiliar and very large building.


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Google I/O 2014 scheduled for June 25-26

Google_IO_2013_01

Just last week, I was wondering when the hell Google I/O was going to be this year. Last year it was in May, but the year before that, it was in June. Well Sundar Pichai just made the announcement that it will be held June 25-26, 2014. It will of course be held at Mascone West in San Francisco again and be live streamed for those that cannot attend.

This is the 7th annual Google I/O, and this year’s registration will go a little differently in order to beat the crazy rush to buy tickets. Those who are interested in attending will need to fill out a simple application form online. Then there will be a random drawing for those that will be allowed to buy tickets. They will be following up with more info soon on how to submit your application.

There are 128 days to go, let’s start the speculation on what we will see this year. Let us know what you guys think in the comments.

source: +Sundar Pichai

Google invites 34 cities to explore Google Fiber

google_fiber_potential_expansion_cities_map

The chances of getting Google Fiber just went up… slightly. Today Google has announced they are working with an additional thirty-four cities on the possibility of adding their 1Gbit service. Major cities include Portland, San Jose, Salt Lake City, Phoenix, San Antonio, Nashville, Atlanta, Charlotte, and Raleigh-Durham. New York City, however, still hasn’t made the cut. The aforementioned cities are not ‘locked’ to get Google Fiber as the local government would need to give its approval.

Here is part of what Google had to say:

We’ve long believed that the Internet’s next chapter will be built on gigabit speeds, so it’s fantastic to see this momentum. And now that we’ve learned a lot from our Google Fiber projects in Kansas City, Austin and Provo, we want to help build more ultra-fast networks. So we’ve invited cities in nine metro areas around the U.S.—34 cities altogether—to work with us to explore what it would take to bring them Google Fiber.

Source: Google Official Blog

Samsung turned down the chance to buy Android in 2004

A man walks out of Samsung Electronics' headquarters in Seoul

As many of us know, Android originally started as a project by Andy Rubin as a company completely separate from Google. It wasn’t until 2005 that Google scooped up the mobile operating system, and a few more years until we actually saw it make an impact on the mobile market. However, it turns out that Google wasn’t Rubin’s first choice to find funding for Android. The Android team originally tried to get one of the biggest manufacturers to take up the project.

In 2004, Andy Rubin and the Android team flew to South Korea to talk with Samsung about securing funding for Android, but instead of any enthusiasm, Samsung reportedly laughed the team out of the board room, considering their small development team size. Hindsight is 20/20, of course, but Samsung still laughed at the group of guys that would eventually go on to completely flip the smartphone industry on its head. Fast forward a few years, and Android is arguably one of Samsung’s most valuable assets.
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SlickLogin, sound-based security alternative, acquired by Google

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SlickLogin, which announced a new sound-based security system a few months ago at the TechCrunch Disrupt event, has been acquired by Google for an undisclosed amount. The goal of the SlickLogin team is to make logging in “easy instead of frustrating” and that it should not get in the way of a user even when two-factor authentication is used. According to their announcement, SlickLogin says Google agrees.
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