Tag Archives: Google Products

Google+ Local officially launches

Google+ Local now Officially launched: Google Places Bye-Bye

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Google+ Local has recently been launched by Google. In short, it is a replacement to Google Places but a really good recommendation tool, probably even better than Foursquare recommendations mainly because it integrates the Google+ social network.

Google has partnered up with Zagat to introduce Google+ Local. Zagat is a very well known company which rates and provides reviews about interesting places around you, mainly restaurants, hotels, clubs, diners, etc. Google+ Local tab has already been added to your Google+ profile. Just sign into Google+, and click on the 7th tab, where it says Local with a superfix NEW.

You may have already seen the advertising of Google+ Local on Google’s homepage, as that’s how they are promoting the new G+ Local. The moment you sign into Google+ Local you will see a page displaying the Recommended places in your city. There are currently 5 major categorization of your favorite places such as Restaurants, Cafes, Bars, Hotels and Entertainment.

For each place there is an overall score which is dependent upon other factors. Take for example, you are searching for a nice 5 star hotel in a city to crash, just click on the most popular overall score and you will immediately see reviews from people you know on G+. The review is based on three important aspects seen in a hotel, the Quality, the Facilities and the Service which is called as Zagat’s 30 point scale. So all the scores will be out of 30.

Google Plus Local Screen Shot 3

You get to vote for each one of them and the overall score will be based on those individual votes you make. Apart from voting you also get to add a personal review. So you always get a quality recommendation…everytime! Your reviews will all be Public by default.

The Plus point here is you get recommendations from people you trust and are friends with, a feature which is seriously missing in a lot travel recommendation sites. There is also an option to book suites, what did you think Google Ads are for? ;)

Google Plus Local Screen Shot 1

Google+ Local has also integrated Search and Maps and is available for all mobile devices too. See a hotel you want to drive to, just click on Directions and Google Maps will come to your rescue.

When writing a certain review you also have the opportunity to upload photos. All those photos will be Public by default so that they can be seen by your friends in extended circles and everyone else too.

Avni Shah, Director of Product Management at Google explains us in the official blog post:

You can also share your opinions and upload photos. These reviews and photos will help your friends when they’re checking out a place, and are also integrated into the aggregate score that other people see. The more you contribute, the more helpful Google+ Local will be for your friends, family and everyone else.

By time we will see more and more features be added to Google+ Local and making recommendations ro your favorite destinations easy and beautiful. Visit Google+ Local by following the link and experience it yourself.

Google Plus Local Screen Shot 2

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Google Drive is now out

Google Drive becomes official: What you need to know about it

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Google Drive is the latest attraction from Google which is a Cloud storage solution but more than that actually. But we already have a number of solutions for cloud storage such as the popular Dropbox, box.com, Microsoft Skydrive but what’s so special with Google Drive? Lets find out shall we.

What’s the Getaway?

Google Drive as all other cloud solutions gives you a limited storage space at first i.e. a 5GB free account and when upgraded to a paid plan gives you 25GB for $2.49 per month but the getaway is your Gmail account will also have been upgraded in the process. So finally you get a mail account with 25GB of storage space for all your mails, isn’t that a good news?

Google Drive features - What you need to know

It also has the functionality of Access Anytime, Anywhere just like every other cloud solution. You can access your Google Drive by your Android device by installing the Google Drive app available at Google Play. Sorry to say but an iOS app is currently unavailable but there are plans to release it in the future. You can also access Google Drive through your PC by installing the Drive software.

A Social Network? Brilliant!

Google Docs is the main highlight of this app. That’s where the real fun starts. The Google Drive already has Google Docs built into it so it becomes easy for you to store your documents and other presentation files.

Where Google Drive really excels is when it brings a small social network into picture. Whenever you share your documents to your friends or colleagues from the Google Drive, your friends can then make a comment on the post and you can reply to them back on the same thread and you get notifications for the same too. This way you can make conversations right from the app, perhaps this feature is the real deal when it comes to Google Drive. And did i tell you can share your files on Google+ too? Perhaps that was seen coming already!

Another main highlight of this app is that it can handle almost 30 file types on its own i.e. next time you are looking to open a PDF file on your Google drive from your browser, its not necessary for you to have Adobe Reader installed onto your computer, Google Drive automatically opens it for you.

Exceptional Filtering Technology

Searching for a pic with your wife when you had been to Hollywood? Don’t get stressed, the filtering feature which comes with Google Drive is top notch. It scans your faces with image recognition technology and filters out texts in your documents with the help of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology.

Here is a short video about Google Drive for you to get to know it better.

Impressed with all the good things about Google Drive? Why not give it a try? Head to the official page of Google Drive and Sign in with your Google account. After Google finishes setting up your drive, you will receive a notification to log in.
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Google Chrome gets Speed Updates

Google Chrome gets so fast that it loads your webpages even before you type

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Google Chrome gets a major overhaul. More Speed, More Secure and More Smart. The Beta Version is now available for download. You can test its speed by downloading from the link provided at the bottom of this post.

Chrome is my f

avorite browser. Although i have installed Firefox, Opera, Maxthon and a load of other browsers too on my computer, i use Chrome the most

frequently. Simply because its fast and i like things to get done quickly. The new Chrome is all about adding more speed.

Google Chrome - Faster and more Secure

According to the official Google blog post,

To get you where you want to go even faster, Chrome will now start loading some web pages in the background, even before you’ve finished typing the URL in the omnibox. If the URL auto-completes to a site you’re very likely to visit, Chrome will begin to prerender the page.

This is a great feat, isn’t it guys? I bet there is no other browser which pre-renders a webpage, atleast till now! Apart from the speed improvements, the Google Chrome Team is also focused to provide the browser with extra security features when downloading a file. Kinda like, the Safari, but this is more Google.

When you download executable files such as .exe and .msi, which are considered as threats to your Computer, the new Chrome will automatically notify you that its dangerous and

ask you if you want to still consider downloading it. I guess this was a major security feature which completely lacked in the previous versions.

I hope the Google Chrome browser will continue to be the best browser in the world.

Download the new Google Chrome Beta over here.

If you liked this article, please don’t forget to pass on your comments! Which is your favorite browser by the way?
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google currents now available

Have you met Google Currents? The next best news aggregator for your smartphone!

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Google Currents is the next best app launched by Google recently. You might have already heard about Flipboard. Unlike Flipboard,

Google Currents is aimed to provide you a rich magazine like interface for reading blogs and getting the latest news delivered to your Android and Apple smartphones.

Google revealed it in their official blog post on Thursday.

Google currents on ipad and iphone

Flipboard works on the phenomena of finding media news by digging through, you and your friends social networking folder, what they have liked and what they have read recently. But Currents is far more advanced and broad-minded than Flipboard, Google Currents is all about what’s popular and what’s hot around the world. It doesn’t rely on any external sources to aggregate content for you, rather brings you the top articles and topics on what everybody is interested in right now!

Lets hear what BusinessInsider has to say about Google Currents,

“Whereas Flipboard is all about what you’re friends are sharing on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., Currents is about what everyone is reading and sharing.”

If you are already an Androidian, Google Currents has a lot more perks in store for you than the Appleboys. The best perk being the advantage of smooth sharing. On Android, after reading an article if you find it interesting you can further share it just by the touch of a button. Unlike Android, iOS users have to login to each sharing service before they decide to just throw Apple and buy an Android (pun intended) !

google currents screenshot

As Google Currents is currently available only for users in the US i didn’t get a chance to try it yet. But according to many user reviews, i heard the animations and transitions in Google Currents is pretty smooth and eye-pleasing. As a head-start Google Currents gives you a variety of publishers to read from including the famous CNET, Forbes, Huffington Post and AllthingsD. This is a great news for Publishers as well as Readers. Publishers get a broader spectrum to share their content on mobile platforms and Readers get opportunity to stay updated to their favorite topics.

Forbes seen through the eyes of google currents

Google Currents is available for both Android and iOS devices. Head to the

download page to experience Google Currents now. Liked Google Currents? Share your views with us.

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google+ new chat system makes debut

I think Google+ Chat is better than Facebook Chat!

A few days back, Google+ had rolled out a new chat system on the social network. As soon as i logged into my Google+ account, a small info message appeared telling me about a new chat feature.

google+ new chat system at a glance

Apparently the Google+ team has now made chatting with people on the social network much easier than Facebook. According to the new feature, you can now chat with the people in your circles and also pick out specific circles you wish to chat with in the future. This is a great relief for me as i can safely select which circles i want to chat with and safely deselect circles that i have no interest in chatting with.

now only choose circles you wish to chat with on google plus

Also one another unique feature about Google+ Chat is that, if you are currently not logged into Google+, you will still be able to chat with those people in your circles by using other Google products such as Gmail, Google Talk, Orkut etc. And guess what you no longer need their e-mail addresses either to start a chat. Isn’t that cool? Unlike Google+, Facebook doesn’t give us an advantage like that because, lets be serious people, there are no Facebook products available other than the social network itself.

But please note that you can only chat with the Google+ people provided they too have added you in their circles. The Follow should be mutual, just like in Twitter. You can DM a person in Twitter only if both of you follow each other. Lance Ulanoff on Mashable has explained it very well,

 It’s a little like Twitter’s direct message rules, which only allow successful transmission of direct messages if the sender and receiver are following each other on Twitter. It’s also a bit like Facebook Chat, which allows open discussion between mutual Facebook friends.

SO what do you think of this new Google+ Chat system, is it smart enough to beat the crap out of Facebook Chat? Please comment. We would also like to chat with you on Google+, please add us to your circles!

Source: MASHABLE

Google Music launching very soon

Google Music to debut next Wednesday. Free music on Android!

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Have you heard of Google Music? If not then its time to sign up and enjoy listening to free music on your favorite Android device. Yes Google Music is the latest Cloud based Music service launched by the Google Inc. which was introduced early this year. But its going big this time.

Google Music can be streamed directly from your

computer browser or from any compatible Android device. The big new is Google is planning to move Google Music from Beta phase to making it public next wednesday. Google Music is apparently making haste and has still not yet purchased the licenses from the record companies to avail the music rights.

Google Music now in Beta stage

Many famous record companies like Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group haven’t yet finalized the agreement between Google launching its cloud music service. CNET reporters suggest that currently talks are going on but rumors suggests that the results aren’t looking positive.

Google has not had a good run with labels and top entertainment providers such as Viacom recently. Only future will tell us if Google Music will be successfully launched as planned and we all wish it good luck. We all know, by providing music streaming for free, Google Music will become the no. 1 service and will also pose as a threat to Apple’s very own popular cloud music service, iTunes.

If you want you can sign up and request an invite to try out the new music service by visiting Google Music. Please note that this service is currently available for users in United States only as it is in Beta.

Experience Google Music on your favorite android device

Already Android sales have beat iPhone sales this year. Rest assured, Apple will be surely looking for some kind of epiphany to bump its sales if Google Music takes off.

Source: CNET

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Google Reader gets a new look

Google Reader gets a new look! Is now systematic and gives option to +1

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That’s right. Google Reader is getting revamped. In the past couple of months every Google product has got the new Google look, starting from Google+, Gmail, Calendar, Docs etc. Now its Google Reader’s time.

The new Google Reader interface is similar to Gmail’s interface. Also Google Reader has now integration with Google+ to share the posts on Google’s very own social network. The “Like” button on feed items too has been replaced by “+1″ button.

According to the official blog post, Software Engineer Alan Green said that,

“Integrating with Google+ also helps us

streamline Reader overall. So starting today we’ll be turning off friending, following, shared items and comments in favor of similar Google+ functionality.”

Google Reader gets a new interface

We all know that previous look of Google Reader wasn’t so smartly design, many links and feeds were poorly arranged and overall it messed up the interface. This new look gives a systematic interface to Google Reader for a user to get to things very easily.

Many of them are not comfortable adapting to the new interface and already people are complaining about Google eliminating many features from the Google Reader. However if you are one of those who do like the new interface then please comment and share your views with us.

Source: Official Google Blog

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Google Labs Bye Bye

Google Labs is going down. Will Gmail be shut down?

Its a heartbreak to tell all of you that Google Labs will be no longer be with us. Bill Coughran, SVP of Google Research Team said in a blog post on Wednesday. We had seen many great products being born at Google Labs such as Google Reader, Google Goggles, Google Wave, Google Calendar and not to mention the Godfather, GMAIL. Recently we had also seen the introduction of Google Swiffy, an app which converts Flash content to HTML5.

Google Labs game over

Don’t worry Google Mail and Google Maps wont be affected. Senior VP said,

To clarify: we don’t have any plans to change in-product experimentation channels like Gmail Labs or Maps Labs. We’ll continue to experiment with new features in each of our products.

As happy we were to hear that, joy didn’t last long as the news broke many other products were to be discontinued indefinitely. Many Google experiments were aborted by the team. When asked the reason why Google LABS was suddenly being shut down, Larry Page the CEO of Google said,

Larry page announces the end of Google Labs

“the company is in the midst of trimming its broad palette of products and services, eliminating those that haven’t proven popular and successful, like Google Health and Google PowerMeter.”

According to an article at PCWorld, there are estimated to be about 56 experimental products in Google Labs, many of them will take a shot!

Bill Coughran further added, “we believe that greater focus is crucial if we’re to make the most of the extraordinary opportunities ahead.” As for other GOOGLE products and apps we can heave a sigh of relief as they will continue to be fully supported such as apps for the Android Market. Perhaps the people at Google are trying to make Google+ a hit, especially after the loss of Buzz, a social network gone in vain and they have succeeded in it as it has already touched the 10 million mark!

Google-Labs-shutting-down

Make a comment and tell us how you feel about Google Labs being shut down. Is it a good decision by Google or a bad one?

Flash Vs HTML5

Google Swiffy Introduced: Flash “out” HTML5 “in”

With the introduction of Google+, Google also introduced its new Flash to HTML5 converter on Tuesday. This creation is the work of a very young, energetic and passionate Googler known as Pieter Senster.

Google Swiffy Labs

According to this software, it can convert Flash animation files known as .SWF into fully functional HTML5 files. As we know Flash is very important to us. All the videos we watch on YouTube and other internet players are Flash related content, so with the introduction of this technology people can now watch videos without installing the Flash plugin, like iPhones and iPads which do not support Flash.

convert-flash-to-html5

Speaking in Technobabble, simply feed the Swiffy converter with a .swf file and the result is a JSON file rendered with the help of SVG and a bit of HTML5 and CSS3. Modern browsers like Google Chrome and Apple Safari reads the converted files as Javascript and renders the content smoothly to you. Take a look at some of the demo content here at Swiffy Galleria.

Maybe you would have also heard a similar Flash to HTML5 converting tool developed by Adobe and only known as Wallaby. But Google claims that Swiffy has lot more advantages than Wallaby. Some of the primary being Swiffy can convert .swf files whereas Wallaby only focuses on .fla file conversion. Also Wallaby’s converted file can easily be edited whereas Swiffy’s files are very hard to breakthrough. For a more deeper review refer to FAQ over here.

Don’t forget to visit Swiffy Labs. Time for your comment! You can also submit your creations over here.

google-plus-socials network

Google+ The Social Network

On Tuesday, Google revealed yet another product named as Google+ Project. Google+ is a new social networking platform created by the popular search giant. It is a social network which will completely revolutionize the way people interact on the Web 2.0.

google-plus-the-social-network

Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President of Google Engineering and founder of the Google+ Project said in Google’s official blog that

We’d like to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software. We want to make Google better by including you, your relationships, and your interests. And so begins the Google+ project

Here are some features of Google+ that will surprise you of how creatively the Google team have designed this project to meet your requirements.

Google+ Feature:

  • Circles

Did you ever wonder how to stop those annoying tagging of friends on Facebook, constant App invitations, unwanted addition to Facebook Groups and million other small things that really get on your nerves, well that’s when Google+ comes into the picture dressed as a Superman. What the Circles feature is all about is that it allows you to categorise your friends and family in a very easy and smart way. This way you dont have to worry about what you share and whom you share it to.

google-plus-circles

Categorising is as easy as dragging and dropping your friends from the friends list into a particular circle created by you and visible only to you. Sharing the things you like is more easy now and the next time you say something no need to be cautious about whom you say it to because the Circle will automatically take care that your content is shared to the people you would like it to.

  • Sparks

google-plus-sparks

Are you bored on Facebook when there’s no one online and when you have nothing to talk about. Google+ breaks that silence by providing you with a built-in recommendation engine to discover the content you are interested in. Google knows what your interests are (just like your wife or girlfriend) by analyzing what you constantly share on the Google+, through the +1 button and your queries on the google search. Google smartly gathers all that information and provides you with the latest articles, photos, videos pertaining to your specific interests at the click of button kinda like Stumbleupon but in a Google fashion.

  • Hangouts

You see your girlfriend or your best friend online in your Facebook chat. You ping them by saying Hi…………………………………… waiting this much wasn’t your plan! What do you think? You will ultimately assume that he’s just not so interested to talk to you or has left his PC to go check out your girlfriend! Isn’t that rude? Definitely it is, don’t worry Google+ isn’t that mean to you.

google-plus-hangouts

No more embarrassments and no more hiding under the rug, Google+ introduces to you a video chat interface where you get to hangout with your friends whenever you want. Just go to your favourite  circle and click ‘Start a Hangout’, you will immediately jump in a video chat screen and your friends will join you as soon as they know that you are “HANGING OUT”.

  • Mobile

google-plus-mobile

Google+ is available on the Android platform too. What makes Google+ing on Mobile cool is its auto-upload feature. According to Gundotra, your phone now is not just a device which can take photos and videos and store them on a memory card. With Google+ power comes less responsibilities, captured multimedia content gets directly uploaded to your PC and is available for instant sharing the next time you log onto your computer. No wasting time sitting and uploading pics, latest is the best what Google+ believes in.

End of Tour.

Presently Google+ the social network is being tested only for a select few. Invites are temporarily disabled at the moment. If you wish to receive an e-mail as soon as the service is ready for use, request an advance invite over here.

How did you enjoy this article? Do you think Google will be successful in reinventing its lost credibility from its last failure from Google Buzz? Share your thoughts by a comment.