Google App Indexing Adds 24 Android Apps & Expands To All English Content Worldwide

google-apps-featured On October 31st, Google announced they are now supporting a new feature named app indexing, which allows publishers to create links from Google's search results directly into the deep content within their Android apps. So if you search for something on your Android device and happen to see a result from a publisher where you also have their app on your device, clicking on that link will open the app and take you right to the content within the app that is related to your query. In December, the first apps started appearing to support app indexing, including the IMDb Android app. Google a [...]


New Google Search App Feature Creates Radio Station Based On Recently Played Music

Google Search Play Music Last week, Google took to its Google+ page to announce a music-related Search app feature for Android users. Saying "Play some music" after tapping the Google search mic or saying "Ok Google" will prompt the app to create an "I'm feeling lucky" radio station. According to Google, the radio station will play a "surprise mix of music" based on a user's recent music listening history. For the new Search app feature to work, +Google Play Music app must be installed. [...]


Okay Google: Take A Photo/Video Comes To Google Mobile Search

google-voice-search Google announced on Google+ that you can now ask your Android phone to take a photo or a video by saying, "Ok Google," then "take a photo" or "take a video." This will launch the Android camera app in the photo or video mode so you can quickly take a photo. I should note that there are other variations of the "take a photo" that work, such as "shoot a" and "take a picture" and so on. Google Glass has supported this since it launched, so it makes sense to extend this to Android devices. Where this may come in handy for search is in the future, if Google extends Google Search mobile to han [...]


Matt Cutts: Google Mobile Queries May Surpass PC Search This Year

mobile-search-featured Speaking at SMX West last week Google's Matt Cutts said that he "wouldn't be surprised" if mobile search exceeded desktop queries this year. A similar comment was made by a Google speaker informally during a roundtable discussion at the International Franchising Association conference in New Orleans earlier this year. We asked Google for an official statement and the company declined to provide one. Google doesn't want to oppose mobile and PC search. Rather it wants to emphasize cross-platform marketing and experiences. The comments above refer to global query volumes not in the US [...]


Will 11th Hour Objections Derail The Google-EU Antitrust Settlement?

Google Europe When the European Commission recently announced yet another antitrust settlement with Google the matter appeared to be coming to an end. This was the third proposed settlement from Google but indications from EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia suggested that it was essentially final and only formalities remained to approve it. Unlike the two previous settlement proposals, this one is reportedly not going to be subjected to a "market test" (formal review by rivals and critics) -- although the European Commission will be accepting comments, apparently. Google's critics immediate [...]


Google Now Adds Google Now “Launcher,” Video On Demand Providers, Airbnb Reservations & More

google-now-launcher Engadget reports Google has quietly rolled out several enhancements to Google search app for Android, bolstering Google Now features on the Nexus 5 and some other devices. Here are the changes that were labeled "bug fixes and performance improvements" in the Google Play store for the app. The most noticeable change is that the Nexus 5 home screen has now been renamed the "Google Now Launcher." Select your TV providers and/or video on demand providers and Google Now will give you recommendations on what to watch. Airbnb reservations also now display in Google Now. Also the alarms and n [...]


It’s Done: Google Settles Search Antitrust Case In Europe

Google EU Roughly a year after Google settled an antitrust investigation with the US Federal Trade Commission, Bloomberg is reporting that Google and the European Commission have reached a final settlement that would end the regulator's antitrust search investigation against the company. According to the report, "Google will escape fines or any finding by regulators that it may have discriminated against competing search sites." Google similarly escaped any significant fines or penalties in the US investigation. The heart of the controversy as it has evolved -- and the core of the settlement -- is [...]


DeepMind Buy Another Google “Moonshot” Of Sorts

DeepMind logo Re/code offers some additional insight into the $400+ million acquisition of artificial intelligence (AI) startup DeepMind that was reported last week. The people at DeepMind will apparently work with the search team at Google but not exclusively: Or as search is known at Google today, the “Knowledge” group, so-called because it no longer just finds keywords on web pages, but instead connects larger concepts. Knowledge is led by Google SVP Alan Eustance, but DeepMind will work closely with a team led by Jeff Dean, a near 15-year Google veteran, best known for his work on distributed syst [...]


“Let’s Go Caroling” Google Easter Egg Gives Mobile Users Their Very Own Christmas Carol Karaoke Machine

google-easter-egg-featured Phandroid.com, a website devoted to Android news and updates, has discovered Google's latest holiday-themed Easter Egg. When performing a Google search for "Let's go caroling" on an Android or iOS device, the first result includes the question "Which carol would you like to sing?" along with a list of the following five carols: "Jingle Bells" "Up on the Rooftop" "Deck the Halls" "O Christmas Tree" "We Wish You a Merry Christmas." Selecting one of the carols delivers a karaoke-style music player. The song's music plays while lyrics are displayed below the control buttons, help [...]


Google News Reader Is Updated For Android & iOS, With Customized Settings & Added Desktop Features

google-news-logo-square Google is updating the look and feel of its News reader on Android and iOS devices, as well as adding a few new features. According to the announcement, the new Google News reader for Android and iOS offers three new customized settings: the option to change the theme from light to dark, reduce or increase font sizes, and select larger-sized story cards with more information. Google says the updated News reader has improved navigation, with a listing of sections made available by clicking the Google News icon in the top left of the screen. A "Google Feedback" option has also been added t [...]


OK Google: How About OK Jarvis, OK Android, Or Even OK Barry

okay-google-android Android Community noticed that some other phrases outside of "OK Google" trigger the voice search on the latest Android operating system, KitKat. So I tested this on my Nexus 5 and discovered that OK Google has alternatives. I tested the following phrases that seemed to work: OK Glass OK Jarvis OK Android OK Barry Now, I am not sure if Google confused Barry with Google and I tested it several times afterwards and sometimes it activates voice search and sometimes not. Here is a video of this in action: I suppose Google's voice search trigger is pretty flexible when matc [...]


The Return Of Pegman And Other New Google Maps Features

googlemaps The new full-screen Google Maps were announced this summer at Google's developer conference. However, the company is still rolling it out to users. Today on the Google LatLong blog, a number of new (or returning) features were introduced. Among them, the "Pegman" Street View icon is back. He/it appears in the lower right corner of the map. Click it and you'll see highlighted areas on the map (in blue) that give you access to Street View images. Mouse over those areas and you get a thumbnail preview. Zoom in and you see blue and yellow dots or circles. Blue dots indicate user-uploaded [...]


Google Places Listings Get Integrated Into Android’s Phone App — And They’re Terrible

android-featured A big change in Android 4.4 is: those using Google's new mobile operating system, nicknamed "KitKat," can search for businesses right from within the Phone app. How's it work? For me, it's awful. Google+ Invades The Android 4.4 “KitKat” Phone App: What It Means For Businesses & People is our separate article that explores the integration in general. In this article, I'll share some examples of how business search works -- and fails -- in Android 4.4. The Disappointing Local Results First up, I want to find a nearby restaurant. Using the Phone app, I type in "restaurants" into the [...]


Google Maps’ Mobile Reach Drops In September — comScore

google-maps-iphone-icon Yesterday, comScore's US smartphone market share figures for September came out. There weren't many surprises -- except for one thing: the Google Maps app has fallen three spots in comScore's rankings. The smartphone app, which used to be the most popular in the US, fell from 5th to 8th position in comScore's "Top 15 apps" chart. In roughly September of last year, Google Maps was overtaken by Facebook as the top individual smartphone app in the US. The replacement of Google Maps by Apple Maps as the default mapping app on the iPhone was largely responsible for the change. In July [...]


Nexus 5 First Impressions: A Great, Search-Centric Smartphone

Google Nexus 5 Google shipped out demo versions of the Nexus 5 late last week. People are still receiving them today. I got one on Friday and have been using it on WiFi ever since. (I haven't tried it on a wireless network and can't speak to the LTE experience.) The phone immediately sold out of its initial supply online. Both the 16GB and 32GB versions now require a wait time of at least 3 - 4 weeks (4 - 5 weeks in the case of the 16GB version). This won't be a comprehensive Nexus 5 handset review or a complete review of Android 4.4 "KitKat." If you're looking for complete rundowns on the handset or i [...]


Google, Android Makers Sued By Apple “Rockstar” Consortium Over Search, AdWords

Google legal Roughly two years ago Google and a consortium of companies competitively bid for the vast patent portfolio of bankrupt Canadian Company Nortel Networks. Google initiated the bidding with $900 million but ultimately was outbid by the Rockstar consortium, consisting of Microsoft, Apple, Blackberry, Ericsson and Sony. Google's final bid was $4.4 billion. Rockstar won the patents for $4.5 billion. Now Google has been sued by Rockstar and two subsidiaries over several of the patents in the former Nortel portfolio: US Patents 6,098,065; 7,236,969; 7,469,245; 7,672,970; 7,895,178; 7,895,183; a [...]


Maps Roundup: Google Avoids Waze Antitrust Fight, Scout Social Mapping, deCarta Route Patent

google-maps-iphone-icon Google spent just over $1 billion to take Waze away from Facebook, Apple or Nokia and Microsoft. It equally sought the real-time driver feedback that Waze crowd-sourcing provides. Given the size of the transaction the US FTC got immediately involved to bring antitrust scrutiny to the acquisition. Now Bloomberg reports that the FTC is unlikely to block the deal: The Federal Trade Commission hasn’t raised concerns that the transaction might hurt competition, said the people, who asked not to be named because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly about the matter. Google said June 21 [...]


Google Adds Waze Traffic To Maps App, Search To Waze

Google Waze Traffic The first "synergies" from Google's Waze acquisition are being rolled out to both Google Maps and Waze users. Google announced this morning in a blog post that real-time Waze traffic updates will appear in the Google Maps app (for iOS, Android): Users of Google Maps for Mobile will now benefit from real time incident reports from Waze users. This means when Wazers report accidents, construction, road closures and more on Waze, the updates will also appear on the Google Maps app for Android and iOS in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, France, Germany, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Switzerla [...]


Google Brings More “Now” To Search With New Quick Answers

google-now-card-featured Google is bringing more of the capabilities of Google Now to the search box and providing a range of personalized "quick answers" regardless of platform. These new search capabilities focus on "travel and logistics" use cases: reservations, flights, package tracking and calendar entries, among a few others. The content and capabilities will likely expand over time. Google's general objective is to make it easy to get information quickly without having to shift through email or drill down into other Google apps. Google Now has been delivering much of this information to mobile users for s [...]


Google Relaunches Zagat App With Yelp In Mind

google-zagat-featured Last week, Google killed the Google+ Local mobile app for iOS, saying that all the same content was available in Google Maps for iOS. Today, the company announced the relaunch of the Zagat site and mobile app for Android and iPhone. All the Zagat content is now free and there's no registration required. And even though much of the Zagat content is available through Google Maps, the Zagat app and Google Maps are still distinct animals. The newly redesigned app is being launched in nine cities, with a promise that it will come to 50 cities in the near future: The new Zagat covers restaura [...]


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