Design

Google deletes Android backups without notification if you don’t use phone

Thanks to a series of incremental improvements to its backup and restore feature, Google has made it fairly easy to migrate from one Android device to another without the hassle of setting up your handset all anew – that is, unless you leave your phone idle for too long. A miffed user has taken to Reddit to complain the Big G automatically deleted his backup without any notification. The incident took place after he purportedly parted with his Nexus 6P handset a few months back and…

Hardware

Google’s giving us some new search upgrades to book cheap travel plans

Google is making it way easier for travelers with flexible schedules to save money. The search giant announced today that it's updating both the Flight and Hotel search tools to make it easier for people to find deals. Now, both tools offer you a chance to find cheaper alternatives by switching your departure and arrival dates by just a couple days. You'll also be able to automatically compare multiple airports and accommodations around your destination to help find the best deal. This service isn't too far…

Online

Google Nuclear Fusion Project Makes Progress Toward Limitless Clean Energy

The engineers at Google Research and an American nuclear fusion company have collaborated to build an algorithm that speeds up experiments in nuclear fusion– the process by which atoms are fused in extreme temperatures to generate massive amounts of energy. Nuclear fusion is the process that occurs in the sun and has long been seen as the key to attaining nearly unlimited amounts of clean energy. Now, according to a report published by the team in Scientific Reports, we’ve come one step…

Science

Google’s new experiment, Triangle, lets you block individual apps from using mobile data

Google recently began testing a new tool for helping people better manage the mobile data used by their smartphones. The new Android app, called Triangle, is currently being tested in the Philippines, and lets you do things like view your data balance, see which apps are accounting for the most data usage and even block individual applications from using your mobile data, among other things. The problem of limited data is not one that’s as common here in the U.S.,…

Mobile

Are you using Google Allo?

Recently, Google unveiled a new feature for one of its messaging apps, Allo, that allows users to create animated cartoon stickers of themselves. It's a very Google solution to what other apps make really simple, but the end result is actually pretty interesting. Using a selfie you take, Allo will scan the image, use machine learning and a neural network to rework the image, and then present a sticker pack based on the artwork from artist Lamar Abrams. It's an…

Mobile

Without Google, I don’t know if I’d be interested in iOS

Recently I’ve been shopping around for a new carrier, and oftentimes – although not every time – when you switch to a new carrier it’s also a good time to shop for a new phone. As I’m browsing through the phones and considering whether I want to stick with Android or go back to iOS, I realized something: If iOS didn’t have Google’s apps, I don't know how much I would actually want to use iOS. Maybe it’s because I…

Gadgets

Google Fiber chief steps down after five months in the job

Google Fiber's chief executive officer Gregory McCray has stepped down after only five months in the role. Google's parent company Alphabet is on the hunt for a replacement, but as McCray was only hired back in February, the company may have been left flat-footed in the search for a stable chief to oversee the high-speed broadband service. "We are committed to the success of Google Fiber," Alphabet CEO Larry Page said in a statement. "The team is bringing gigabit connections…

Design

GOOGLE HAS OPEN-SOURCED CHROME FOR IOS

Google has finally figured out how to open-source Chrome for iOS. On Tuesday, Google announced that developers could now modify and compile the iOS version of Chrome. Previously, developers could compile open-source versions of Chrome for the web and Android. With this new update, Chrome for iOS is now joining Google’s open-source Chromium project repository. Chromium started as an initiative for desktop web development, and in May 2015 Google incorporated Android mobile web browser The iOS version of Chrome was…

Gadgets

GOOGLE IS KILLING ITS BOLD HANDS FREE PAYMENT EXPERIMENT

When Google launched Android Pay at its I/O conference back in 2015, it also teased a program that let you keep your phone in your pocket and still go through the normal checkout process. Called Hands Free, the limited pilot used the phrase, “I’ll pay with Google,” to alert the cashier that you wouldn’t actually be using a physical form of payment. Google has announced that it is shutting down the service on Feb. 8, which launched last spring on…

Online

Google’s Trusted Contacts helps family keeps tabs on you — if you want them to

Feel unsafe walking home from work alone late at night? Well, now your smartphone can escort you. Google has released a new app that allows you to share your location with family and friends, or lets you check in on their location. The app is meant to be used as a safety app, for when people are either lost or feel like they are in danger, but has other use cases, as well. In IT Blogwatch, we ask you to…

Design

Google Made A $7800 Whiteboard For Your Google Docs

On Tuesday, Google announced a new product called Jamboard, a $US6000 ($7846) 4K 55-inch display that will let people draw on stuff during meetings. The Jamboard works with the G Suite (the stuff formerly known as Google Apps or just Google Docs) and lets people draw and collaborate on a display that can also be used in meetings. You can pull in information from Docs, Sheets and Slides, and you can also add photos from Google Drive. When you’re done…

Mobile

Google Killing Nexus Smartphones Was the Right Thing to Do

HIGHLIGHTS Several mid-range Android phones today have high-end specs and clean UI This eliminates the need for Nexus smartphones Google can now focus on improving Android features The launch of Google’s new Pixel phones has ushered in the demise of the Nexus range of devices, the popular developer-friendly smartphones and tablets that also offered top-end hardware at reasonable prices. Despite that, the Nexus line might have worn out its welcome by now, and perhaps this was the right time to…

Online

Google I/O 2016: What to expect

Google is taking I/O 2016 back to the mothership this year. Instead of holding it at a convention center in San Francisco, the company is hosting the event at the Shoreline Amphitheater outdoor concert venue in its Mountain View backyard (no, really). The show is meant to educate developers about using Google's platforms, but the reason we all tune in is to see product updates and big, brand-new things from the Internet giant. I don't know for sure what Google…

Mobile

You’ll get Google’s Gboard features, too

The new keyboard app for iPhones and iPads gets search, GIF and emoji abilities. Google promises it hasn't forgotten devices powered by its Android software. Those with Android-powered phones sometimes have enjoyed the fruits of Google's labor earlier than those with iPhones -- the Chrome browser, for example, or the ability to store Google Maps for offline use. But people with Apple's iOS-powered mobile devices were the first to get Gboard, the search-enabled, emoji-rich, GIF-infused keyboard that Google released Thursday.…

Science

Striking murals turn Google data centers into pieces of art

Google processes more than 30 billion queries a day and each one at one point travels through a faceless data center with seemingly endless rows of servers. To bring some curb appeal to the Internet's so-called "homes," Google has tapped artists to paint murals on four data centers, hoping to expand the project to even more. So far two centers, in Oklahoma and Belgium, have gotten facelifts, Google announced this week. "It may look like a giant canvas, but this…

Technology

Google using romance novels to train its artificial intelligence to write fiction

Google is using romance novels to teach its artificial intelligence (AI) system to better understand how people communicate. Researchers at Google Brain, the company's AI-focused deep learning project, presented a paper earlier this month that detailed techniques they used to teach its AI to write fiction — and the results were unexpectedly haunting. The paper, first reported by Quartz, details Google's method, which involved using thousands of romance novels and other works of fiction to "train" the AI. The company then…