Leaked screenshots suggest SMS/MMS support for Google Hangouts is close

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Some new screenshots suggest support for SMS messaging is close to being included in Google’s Hangouts messaging platform. Support for SMS messaging was one of the glaring omissions when the new Hangouts app was released earlier this year, though Google has always maintained their plan was to unify messaging protocols including SMS. As part of the support for text messaging, it appears Hangouts will also support MMS, although it is not clear whether users will be able to send videos as MMS using Hangouts. In addition to the SMS and MMS integration, the new version will also allow sharing of videos via the Hangouts platform.
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Google, Cisco, and SAP may be placing bids on BlackBerry

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According to Reuters, BlackBerry could be selling off either parts of itself or the company as a whole to another tech giant. Among the known companies discussing bids are Google, Cisco, and SAP. Intentions from the three are quite clear. Cisco and SAP would want to absorb BlackBerry for its enterprise assets. With BlackBerry’s market share is shrinking quickly, it would be wise for them to sell before things get worse.

Google could be looking toward making Android more business-friendly. After turning Motorola into a manufacturer for a more general audience, Google may want to absorb another company to lean into the enterprise crowd. BlackBerry has just as much brand recognition as Motorola; therefore, Google’s strategy could be converting struggling, already known brands into one that slows down its production to focus on core products.

Source: Reuters

Ads are now showing up in Gmail’s Promotions folder in the Android app

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Here’s some news that shouldn’t shock anyone: Google is now displaying ads in the Gmail app. Google, being an advertising company, already implemented ads in the web version of Gmail, so the obvious next step was to put them in the app. Fortunately, they only appear in the Promotions folder of Gmail, and only at the top, so they’re far from the annoying, invasive types of ads you see on other sites or in apps. They look like any other email, but with a different color highlight and a badge that clearly marks them as an advertisement.

Have any of you started noticing ads in your inbox? Let us know in the comments.

source: AndroidWorld
via: Android Police

Rumor: Nexus smartwatch codenamed ‘Gem’ could be unveiled October 31

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We know that Google is working on a smartwatch of their own, and the latest rumor is that it’s codenamed “Gem” and could be unveiled alongside the Nexus 5, Nexus 10, and of course Android 4.4 Kit Kat later this month. I’m not buying into this rumor since we have not seen any leaks of the watch, not even an FCC filing. If I were a betting man, I would put my money on next year’s Google I/O.

We have heard everything from October 14 through October 31 for when Google will have their event. You can forget October 14 since invites would have been sent out by now. Last year, the event was scheduled for Monday, October 29, but was cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy. Of course later that day, they went ahead and made the announcements via press releases. I would expect this year’s event to take place the last week in October (just like last year), and rumors are indicating October 31. Just don’t expect to see a Nexus smartwatch.

source: +Artem Russakovskii
via: Phone Arena

A slew of Android 4.4 screenshots leak, plus an Easter Egg

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A few Android 4.4 screenshots leaked a couple of weeks ago, but today we are treated with a lot more. Of course, these shots haven’t been confirmed, and many will point to the fact that the OS is called Key Lime Pie. Remember Android 4.4 was going to be called Key Lime Pie, but that changed with the Kit Kat deal. Assuming these shots are real, we have no idea when these screenshots were taken or how old the version of the OS is on the test unit.

Google always throws in an Easter Egg with each version of Android, and the tester shows us, which lends a little credibility.After tapping on “About Android” in the Settings, a large “K” along with a lime wedge will appear.


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Tech startup Flutter acquired by Google

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If Google Now functions as the ears of your smartphone, waiting for your next command, tech startup Flutter hopes their gesture control app will serve as the eyes for both mobile devices and computers. Google seems to think it is a good idea as they have acquired the company according to a letter on the Flutter web site. The ability to use gestures to control a computer device is obviously not new. The most recent example is the implementation of gesture controls for the Moto X, but even that was preceded by implementations like the Xbox Kinect hardware. One thing that may make Flutter a bit unique is the use of the webcam built-in to a device, meaning no extra hardware is needed.
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Chromebooks now account for 22% of computers in schools in the US

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According to the latest statistics about what computers are being used in schools around the country, Google’s Chromebooks account for about 22% of all computers in the classroom. Considering this is an area where Microsoft was previously extremely dominant, that 22% is a pretty significant chunk of the market. In perspective, that accounts for a little over 5000 K-12 schools total.

Microsoft and Google (and even Apple, to an extent) try to compete in schools to help turn students into customers later on in life. Google has become increasingly aggressive in tackling this market recently, especially considering how cheaply Chromebooks are available and Google’s free office suite that competes with MS Office. Microsoft still claimed 58% of the educational market, but they’re on a downward trend from previous years, and Google knows that they need to stay competitive to keep gaining ground in that market. In decade, it’s very possible that Chromebooks will be the norm in school systems.

source: Business Insider

ASUS Nexus 10 nearing a release according to @evleaks

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While there has been plenty of information and images of the rumored Nexus 5 trickling out, a successor to last year’s Nexus 10 hasn’t received the same treatment. A few weeks ago, Twitter’s favorite leaker @evleaks confirmed legitimacy when it showed up on a system file in the United Kingdom. So leave it to him to shed some more light on the refreshed device. Earlier today he tweeted out an image (above) that defines clearly who will be manufacturing the device. Also, he said that we are “getting closer…” which he probably means to an announcement. ASUS will be teaming up with Google yet again to create this year’s edition of the Nexus 10.

Google is moving away from Samsung manufacturing the 10-inch tablet. The Korean manufacturer has been releasing a huge amount of tablets and can even be credited, to an extent, with Android’s overthrowing of the iPad in sales for Q2 of 2013. At this time it is unknown what the specifications will be for the ASUS-made Nexus 10.

Source: @evleaks

Premature SPIGEN Nexus 5 case on Amazon met with sarcastic reviews, hints at October 31 release date

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The Nexus 5 should be announced later this month, but that hasn’t stopped manufacturers from offering cases for the upcoming device. Probably built on dimensions given by phone manufacturer’s specs beforehand, or possibly even guesswork. One of the manufacturers, SPIGEN, has posted a Nexus 5 “slim fit” case on Amazon and set October 31st as the release date. This coincides with what we have been hearing. Not only that, reviewers had a little fun with it.

Some of the comments are legitimate, saying the case doesn’t fit their test Nexus 5 because it is too loose, but some are intentionally sarcastic, like “This fits very well around my vapor edition Nexus 5, as snug as a bug in a rug. a word of caution, the case adds weight to the phone, the phone weighs exactly 0.0 pounds with out the case, the case adds a few ounces to that 0.0 pounds.” Head to the source link for more sarcastic goodness.

Source: Amazon
Via: PhoneArena

Google rolling out updates to Chrome for Android and for the desktop

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Google announced today some new features that are being added to the Chrome browser on both the desktop and in the Android version of the browser. On the desktop, Google has added a new menu item in the right-click popup menu that will let users “Search Google for this image.” Users could already search by image via the image results page. This change makes it much easier for users to access that functionality and they will be able to initiate the search from any web site.
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