Tag Archives: google

Google Android N Developer Preview – An Unexpected Revelation

To all Android fans out there, there’s good news for you – Google has unveiled its new OS, the Android N. However, you can’t use it unless you are a developer, since it is the developers preview.

The New OS, which was expected to be revealed at the I/O Conference this May just like old times, has been released two months earlier. Hiroshi Lockheimer, Google Head of Andoird, said, “It’s earlier than ever, it’s easier to try and we’re expanding the ways for you to give us feedback. We want to hear from you and iterate on the platform with you – that’s what makes Android stronger.”

The primary reason for the earlier than expected release of the developer’s preview is, of course, to let the users give their critical feedback on the OS so it can be further tweaked and improved for the final version.

Regardless, this earlier release has brought with it an “early-bird” look into the amazing features Android N will offer. Let’s take a quick look at some of those features:

The Most Awaited, Split-Screen View

Multitasking has always been a difficult feature to offer on mobiles, and even on some tablets. However, with the Android N OS, users can interact with two apps simultaneously with either side-by-side view or one-above-the-other. Best of all, the split views can be resized as per the users’ needs.

Improved Battery Life

Having a long lasting battery is every user’s desire. In its new Android, Google has tweaked and enhanced the Doze feature to amplify the battery life of your mobile. In the last version of the Doze feature, Doze kicks in if the mobile is left idle for a while. However, in the latest version the power-saving mode will trigger immediately when the screen turns off.

Grouped Notifications

Notifications have not always been very useful for alerts because too many notifications clutter up the screen and mess up the important alerts. With the bundled notifications in Android N, notifications from the same app will grouped up in a single tab.

Reply to Notifications

It won’t be long when the days of tapping notification and redirecting to the app to reply. The new Android N offers the inline replies feature that lets you respond or reply to the notifications right from the notification shades.

Feature Image Courtesy of: http://developer.android.com/preview/index.html

Don’t Go Camping around Stores This Black Friday without Checking out Google’s Findings

The annual shopping frenzy of Black Friday is upon us. The day fills us with the mix feelings of excitement and worry. Excited because of the best deals ever, and worried because of the most crowded day of the year.

So, if you’re feeling more worried than excited due to thought of throwing yourself into an insane number of crowds all going for the same deals as you, don’t worry. This black Friday, Google, the Search Engine giant, has got you all covered.

In its latest blog “Think with Google”, Google has prepared for you an ultimate survival plan (an infographics) on how you can easily avoid the overwhelming crowd and find the best time to hit the stores.

The anonymized data presented in the form of an infographic was collected last year on Black Friday. The data was collected from the device of users who turned on History Location while shopping. Well, the result is something every Black Friday shopper needs to see.

According to the findings, morning is the ideal time to hit the stores on Black Friday, and afternoon should be avoided. The data has hampered the wrongly-held belief of people who has always thought that afternoon is the best time for shopping.

As you can see on the image below that the traffic at almost all the retailing stores peaks at around 2pm to 4pm and starts declining from 6pm and on words.

Image Courtesy of: Thinkwithgoogle.com
Image Courtesy of: Thinkwithgoogle.com

The huge traffic pattern and timing isn’t the startling data that Google has unveiled through its infographics. Perhaps, the most surprising finding it has presented is that Black Friday isn’t the only gigantic shopping day of the year. In fact, Christmas Eve is the day when hundreds of people flock to discount stores for Christmas gifts.

Lastly, Google has also predicted in the report that this year almost 82% of the users will check the price tags on their mobiles while purchasing in stores.

Feature Image Courtesy of: Thinkwithgoogle.com

Google Project Ara Modular Mobiles – The Revolutionary Smartphones

Owning a desktop PC seems to be the most preferred choice of many users. Why, you may ask? Perhaps, it is because desktop machines let you customize them the way you see fit. If you need more memory, you can just open the side-lid of your PC’s casing and replace the current one with a new. Simple!

What if the same notion could be applied to smartphones as well? How wonderful would it be to have a mobile that has customizable features? Luckily, Google Project Ara will bring such technology in your hands soon- a modular smartphone that you’ve been waiting for years.

Project Ara Inception

Project Ara is an open hardware system. It was the inception of Motorola before it was acquired by Google. While in Motorola, the project was worked on and supervised by the Motorola Advanced Technology and Project group, which later bossed by Google after acquisition. Although in 2014 Lenovo acquired Motorola from Google but the “Big G” didn’t give away its Google Advanced Technology and Project group, along with some other patents.

What’s a Modular Smartphone

Modular smartphone will be much like a desktop PC in that it will come with a basic exoskeleton that can be customized as you see fit using different modules. There will be a modular for camera, memory, front display, and more. Since it is an open hardware platform, there will be modules not only by Google but also third party developers, which will be available on a Google Play like store.

What made modular smartphones so amazing apart from their customizable features is that the modules can be changed without the need of turning off the phone first. The modules will be connected with the device using electropermanent magnets.

Operating System for Project Ara Modular Mobiles

Since the modular smartphone may come under the umbrella of Google projects, it will use Google’s flagship OS, android, although it’d be slightly tweaked for compatibility with the device. However, it is still open to debate whether it will be an official android or not as Ara isn’t an official product of Google but a “development effort”.

The Launch and Cost of Project Ara

Although the phone is still in its development phase, the project was expected to be launched in 2015. However, later in 2015 the project’s launched date was moved to 2016. Regarding the smartphone’s price, it was stated that the “production cost” of the modular mobile is around $50 to $100. According to the officials, the final cost will be decided once the carrier contract is made.

Image Courtesy of: gizmag.com/project-ara-puerto-rico-trial/35632/

Paint the Town – Google Invites Californians to Create Artwork to Be Displayed on Its Self-Driving Cars

Google wants its prototype self-driving cars to make human friends. To achieve that goal, it is inviting the residents of California to participate in its Paint the Town project, and win a chance to experience its self-driving cars from up close.

Led by the motto, “Help transform our self-driving cars into moving pieces of public art”, Paint the Town is a mobile-art project that invites the artistic minds of California to submit their magnum opus. Upon getting selected, only 10 chosen artworks will be featured on the car doors of Google’s self-driving prototypes “for a month” and even more. Apart from the car, the artworks will also be features on the website as well as the “Open Garage” community at this fall, where the lucky winners will get a chance to ride in the prototype.

The participants are required to be at least 13 years or more, and they must be legal residents of California. The artworks can be submitted between July 11th and August 30th. The submissions must also be submitted with a 100-words description supporting the theme of the project, “my community, my neighbors.”

Google hasn’t revealed any further information apart from a brief overview of the project and some simple guidelines, as of yet. However, in the coming month of July, more information is expected to be released regarding the project. If you’re also interested in the project, you may check out their website for more info.

Google Took Its Street View to Sheer Vertical Cliffs Starting With The El Capitan

Google’s street view has been known to taking internet users on breathtaking virtual tours. It has not only mapped the famous places around the globe like the rivers and canals of Venice, but also the notorious spots popular for their unsolved mysteries like the Loch Ness.

Recently, Google took the plunge and went on, on taking the most difficult of challenges, i.e., mapping the vertical street view of dangerous cliffs or should we say a 3,000 feet high vertical rock formation in the Yosemite National Park, The El Capitan. However, instead of sending its own personnel to do the mapping on dangerous heights, Google took the help of the legendary climber, Tommy Caldwell, who scaled the El Capitan along with his companion six months ago, on January, 2015.

This time Caldwell joined two other famous climbers, Alex Honnold and Lynn Hill, to pull this incredible feat again. The mission of the group was to capture the whole route to the top of the summit along with the best camp-out spots as an educational material for potential climbers.

To collect the imagery the team let Honnold, the quick and efficient as Caldwell put it, strapped the street-view camera around his back…“Alex took the camera and pretty much ran 3,000 feet up with photographer partner Brett Lowell. Now, anyone can get the beta (climbing speak for insider advice) before they climb the entire route”, mentioned by Caldwell in his Google Blog Post.

The end-results are simply amazing: 360-degree panoramic at 3,000-feets high, the unbelievable maneuvers pulled by Lynn and the majestic images that start from the root of the El Capitan and goes all the way to the famous The Nose.

You can find more images and behind the scenes on Google’s blog.