Signal’s Encryption Features Make It a Choice Messaging App

Messaging has become increasingly confusing, as users pick among Instagram, iMessage, Skype, Snapchat, Twitter and Google’s Hangouts and Allo — not to forget the basic but limited SMS. Notifications pile up and search becomes difficult if not impossible. According to Wired, all that confusion would disappear if users would simply pick a single app, Signal, which is free, has strong encryption and works on every mobile platform. Signal’s developers say they won’t add emojis, ads, stickers or web-tracking, to keep it simple to use and speedy. Continue reading Signal’s Encryption Features Make It a Choice Messaging App

Facebook Messenger Lets Users Post Snapchat-Like Stories

Messenger has joined Instagram and WhatsApp in emulating Snapchat’s popular Stories concept. Messenger Day is a new feature within the Facebook Messenger app that encourages users to share a daily photo story. Users can post photos and 15-second videos taken with the Messenger camera or images and GIFs saved on their smartphone. The Messenger Day story is visible to all Facebook friends, but it disappears after 24 hours. Facebook’s unique special filters for the images are designed to spark conversations and encourage meet-ups. Continue reading Facebook Messenger Lets Users Post Snapchat-Like Stories

Telecoms and Silicon Valley Engage at Mobile World Congress

European telecoms and Silicon Valley giants are jousting again, at the annual Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The major carriers, including Deutsche Telekom AG and Spain’s Telefónica SA are pushing for the European Union to either lift some of the regulations imposed on them or apply similar rules to Internet-based text and voice services, such as Facebook’s WhatsApp or Google Hangouts. At the same time, several telecoms have signed on to Facebook’s TIP project, an open source initiative to design cellular towers. Continue reading Telecoms and Silicon Valley Engage at Mobile World Congress

Mobile Companies Face Stagefright, Android Security Issues

The emergence of Stagefright, a malicious code that targets Android phones, has impacted all mobile companies using the Google operating system. Google has already fixed the problem in its own line of Nexus phones and tablets, and now plans to supply monthly security updates wirelessly. Both Samsung and LG have also announced they will be issuing a monthly security update; other impacted mobile phone manufacturers include Sony, HTC and Android One, all of which have provided or plan to provide Stagefright patches. Continue reading Mobile Companies Face Stagefright, Android Security Issues

Google For Work: Software, Cloud Services Target Enterprise

Google is competing with fellow tech giants Microsoft and Amazon to offer businesses the best options for their employees, from laptops to software to cloud services. The company’s Google Drive for Work is designed to help co-workers share files, even if they were created in a Microsoft or Lotus program. Also, the company’s new pitch to workplaces has featured its cloud services, which provides computing power, storage, application storage, and mobile support for businesses’ online presence. Continue reading Google For Work: Software, Cloud Services Target Enterprise

LG All-In-One Chromebase Computer to Hit Shelves This Month

LG announced that its new family friendly, all-in-one computer powered by Chrome OS will be available for $350. The “simple, fast and secure” Chromebase will take on the iMac-dominated all-in-one space when it begins shipping this month. Chromebase combines cloud computing, access to “tens of thousands of apps” via the Chrome Web Store, a widescreen 21.5-inch 1080p display, an Intel Celeron 2955U Haswell processor, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. Continue reading LG All-In-One Chromebase Computer to Hit Shelves This Month

STB News: Google Getting Closer to Unveiling its Android TV

According to documents obtained by The Verge, Google is getting ready to launch Android TV, which is expected to be very different than the failed Google TV. Rather than turning your television into a bigger version of your smartphone, Android TV will be a new entertainment interface similar to set-top boxes such as Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV. Major video app providers are reportedly already building for the platform, which is expected to support voice input, notifications and optional game controllers. Continue reading STB News: Google Getting Closer to Unveiling its Android TV

Google Glass Software Update Delivers Compelling Features

Google has released a Glass software update that includes some substantial new features. Update XE12 provides users with the ability to snap a photo with a discreet wink, adds a lock screen function for improved security, offers options for uploading Glass-shot videos directly to YouTube, and intros Hangouts integration for messaging and chatting with friends. Additionally, the Google Play Music app is available and the long-awaited MyGlass app for iOS is being rolled out. Continue reading Google Glass Software Update Delivers Compelling Features

Google Deal Extension with Publicis Threatens TV Ad Sales

In an extension of the deal in which advertising holding company Publicis Groupe agreed to buy up tens of millions of dollars of YouTube’s advertising, the company’s agencies DigitasLBi and Razorfish will also buy $100 million of Google advertising across several of its platforms, including YouTube, Google+ and Hangouts. Publicis is getting a sizeable discount, and Google is positioning itself to compete more fiercely with TV advertising. Continue reading Google Deal Extension with Publicis Threatens TV Ad Sales

Google Unveils New Google+ “Auto Awesome” Photo Features

During a recent live-streamed conference, Google announced new Google+ photo features, including Action, Eraser and an iMovie Trailers-like Auto Awesome Movie tool. The company announced that the Google+ Hangouts app for Android now offers location sharing, animated GIF support and SMS integration. There have also been changes to Google+ Hangouts On Air, including a new Control Room menu. There are currently 540 million monthly active Google+ users. Continue reading Google Unveils New Google+ “Auto Awesome” Photo Features

Google I/O: New Music Service, Google+ Updates and More

Google kicked off its annual I/O developers conference yesterday with a three and a half hour keynote delivered before 6,000 attendees at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. In addition to a surprise appearance by CEO Larry Page, who discussed obstacles to technological progress and answered questions from software developers, the event detailed updates and new releases involving Google+, Google Maps, Hangouts, Google Play Music All Access, a special Galaxy S4 smartphone and more. Continue reading Google I/O: New Music Service, Google+ Updates and More

YouTube Opens Live Streaming to More Channels this Week

YouTube announced that it will now offer its live streaming to any channel owner with at least 1,000 subscribers. This is the next step in the site’s efforts to make live online video more robust and attractive. Last year, YouTube offered select publishers the ability to charge for live streams, and earlier this year it introduced a new live video platform that features DVR and real-time auto-transcoding functionality. Continue reading YouTube Opens Live Streaming to More Channels this Week

New Products and Updates: Google I/O Kicks Off Tomorrow

Google’s I/O developers conference kicks off tomorrow with a three-hour keynote from the Moscone Center in San Francisco. During the three-day event, the company is expected to announce an update to its Android mobile operating system and an updated version of its 7-inch Nexus 7 tablet (and possibly a new 11-inch model), while there has been speculation that Google may also unveil a new smartphone from Motorola, a new design for Google Maps, new Chrome features and more. Continue reading New Products and Updates: Google I/O Kicks Off Tomorrow

Rabbit Hops Into the Game with New Video Chat Program

Startup company Rabbit has created a video chat program in which users can share music and videos in real-time while chatting with one another. Users can have multiple conversations with friends, that all appear in circular bubbles to enhance the feeling of being in the same space together. The new approach by Rabbit could possibly provide competition for other successful programs such as Skype, Apple’s FaceTime, and Google+ Hangouts. Continue reading Rabbit Hops Into the Game with New Video Chat Program

New Feature: Conference into Google+ Hangouts with Free Voice Calls

  • Google may directly challenge Skype with a new feature that enables free voice calls to the U.S. and Canada within Google+ Hangouts.
  • “To activate the feature, simply start a Hangout, click the Invite button at the top, select ‘Phone,’ and enter a phone number. If the recipient picks up, they’ll be instantly connected,” reports TechCrunch. “The free offer is supposed to last through 2012.”
  • This allows people who don’t have a Google account or even a computer to join a G+ video chat. It also enables free 1-on-1 calls, much like Skype.
  • The service has the potential to be used for conference calls, in making group decisions or serve as a a draw simply for casual use.
  • Google hopes the free calls will attract people to Hangouts, which has been “a bit sparse due to the social network’s low current user count.”

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