Google started rolling out an update for the Google+ client on Android devices today. The bulk of the improvements involve the Photos app with support for Android Beam so images can be shared via NFC, an option to uses Photos as part of Daydream when the screensaver is running, and the ability to pull up photo details from a dropdown menu. This last feature has been well received by many, showing that not all improvements have to be some awesome new function. In addition to the new capabilities added for Photos, Google has fixed a problem with Locations that was causing friends’ current locations to not display properly. » Read the rest
Anyone who has spent any time on the Internet knows that YouTube’s comment system may best be described as a “wretched hive of scum and villainy” as Obi-Wan would say. To combat that impression and clean the place up, YouTube has started to implement some changes to turn comments into conversations. One piece of that effort is the move to require a Google+ account to be able to leave a comment, similar to the strategy used to clean up the Google Play feedback system. After rolling out some new comment features back in September on a limited basis, YouTube announced today that they are expanding this to all videos you may be watching on the service.
One change visitors will note is that “Top Comments” will move to the top of the comment feed. Posts from the video’s creator, popular personalities, threads that are judged “engaging” based on up ratings, and people in your Google+ circles will be listed first. If you really want to see comments chronologically regardless of the quality of the content, an option to switch to “Newest First” will be available.
YouTube is also making it possible for commenters to limit accessibility to their comments to different levels, like the public, only people in chosen Circles, or even just specific individuals. YouTube says replies will be threaded to help make it easier to follow the conversations.
Finally, if you post videos on your channel on YouTube, the service is providing some new tools to let you moderate comments before they are posted, block certain words, or auto-approve posts from known fans.
Check out the video below for more on the new commenting system, then head over to the TalkAndroid channel to see it in action while you watch some of our videos.
source: YouTube Creators Blog
At this point, I’m pretty sure Google enjoys trolling the internet. They recently held a Google Play event where seemingly nothing noteworthy happened, and today, Google has announced an event for tomorrow… just for Google+ updates. No hardware, no software, just news about a “few updates” to their social network. I’m sure it’ll still be an interesting event, and there’s probably some cool stuff planned.
That Nexus 5 has to be announced sometime, right?
Most of us use our smartphones as our primary camera, and we’ve already shown you the best apps for taking photos as well as editing them. There’s still another piece to that puzzle: apps for viewing your artistic creations. Sure, you could use the built-in gallery app on your phone, but there are plenty of excellent alternatives in the Play Store that give you more flexibility over organizing and viewing your pictures. In this guide, we’re going to go over the top ones. Hit the break to get started. » Read the rest
Auto-backup is added in the update to automatically backup user’s photos taken on their phone to the cloud, of course with permission. Snapseed features are also included. Users can use tweaks like cropping, rotating, and exposure adjustments, as well as the popular filters Snapseed offers. Google’s own “Auto-awesome” feature which was demonstrated at the I/O is also available in the app after the update. Searching for the best photos is also improved in the update, using the new “highlights” feature which allows Google to pick and display the best photos from an album on the main page of that album.
Among the other features the update offers are improved location sharing and automatic related hashtags. You can download the updated app through the link after the break. » Read the rest
If you’re constantly heading over to the homes of friends and family to supply some tech support, Google+ now provides a much more simple solution, via Hangouts Remote Desktop. Powered by the same technology behind Chrome Remote Desktop, this new feature will provide a much more efficient way of getting things done.
Of course this application requires permission, so you don’t have to worry about hackers being able to swiftly commandeer your desktop without your approval.
Instructions to use the application are after the break. » Read the rest
Google+ has supported animated gifs since the very beginning and along with its major app update, has also announced the ability to have animated profile photos. When you upload an animated GIF as your profile photo, it will animate on your profile page on both mobile and desktop. Fortunately, Google+ made it to where your photo will not animate within the stream, otherwise that could be incredibly distracting. If you aren’t sure how to go about making an animated GIF, simply doing a Google search for “How to create a gif” will point you in the right direction.
Source: Google+ Page
Google has rolled out an update to their Google Play services, which features some pretty cool new features. Both new maps APIs and Google+ sign-in are features present in the update.
Google+ sign-in allows users to sign in to their applications using Google credentials, which brings along all of their Google information with them for the app. Things like your name, display picture, and social circles will carry over into applications. Sharing posts to your Google+ page are also more customizable and will allow you to make them a bit more interactive, like including actions such as “listen” and “check-in” to your posts. Popular location app Banjo was used to showcase the integration, and showed what’s possibly one of the coolest features of the update; over-the-air installs of an application from a website, with or without access to an app store. That seamless integration is going to let developers add plenty of cool features to their apps in the future. TuneIn Radio is also on board with the Google+ integration, and more apps are sure to follow.
Google Maps also received some API updates, fixing plenty of bugs for users. Not quite as flashy and exciting, but still worth having. Hopefully we’ll see some apps take advantage of these features in the near future.
source: Android Developers Blog
We’ve seen Google push more and more for complete desktop and mobile integration through it’s popular browser, Chrome. Now, we’ve got a sneak peek at some brand new features to be debuted in Chrome OS, including some new notifications and an unnamed icon sitting pretty in the task bar. The notifications appear to pull from both Google+ and Google Voice, cleanly keeping everything in one place. As far as that mysterious icon goes, we don’t have much information on it, but since Google has a plethora of different communication apps in their portfolio, it isn’t too much of a stretch to assume it’s going to tie all of those together, or consolidate them. Personally, I think getting an application to text via your PC built into Android natively would be a great addition.
source: The Verge
The crafty CyanogenMod team has introduced a brand-new clock widget for CM10.1 ROMs today, offering impressive weather and calendar integration. Featuring the same bold face as the revamped clock in Android 4.2, CM’s new clock, Chronus, works on both lock screens and home screens. Also included are several nifty features that aren’t apparent in Jelly Bean’s stock clock widget, with complete control over your choice of weather data and a slew of calendar options. The best part? The new clock will be included in CM10.1 nightlies starting tonight. » Read the rest