‘Google’ Tagged Posts

Google Assistant is getting help for customized and scheduled routines

Routines are in all probability the most effective options the Google Assistant group has rolled out in latest months. Simply say “Hey Google,...


Routines are in all probability the most effective options the Google Assistant group has rolled out in latest months. Simply say “Hey Google, good night time” and the Assistant will shut down your lights and begin taking part in some nature sounds to assuage you into deep sleep (or no matter else you need it to do). One limitations thus far was that you can solely use Google’s preset routines (assume “good morning,” “I’m house,” and so forth.). As the corporate introduced at the moment, although, you’ll quickly have the ability to create your personal customized routines and likewise schedule routines for a particular day or time.

With Customized Routines, Google Residence customers will quickly have the ability to set their very own phrases to kick off a routine and choose on of what Google guarantees are “a million Actions.” So if you wish to set the temper for dinner, you may create a “Hey Google, dinner’s prepared” routine that turns up the music, turns off the TV and units the temperature within the kitchen. Straightforward.

Quickly, you’ll additionally have the ability to schedule these routines to run at a set time in order that your lights activate or off at a given time, for instance. Google says you’ll have the ability to schedule these actions in each the Google Clock app on Android and the Google Assistant app. And with that, even the Clock app now affords an AI-based device.

These new options will roll out later this summer time, although Google has currently had a propensity for being a bit late with these launches.

Google I/O kicks off tomorrow — right here’s what to anticipate


Google has been rolling out information at a gradual charge since final week, in what looks like a little bit of a last-minute clearinghouse forward of tomorrow. The corporate’s already taken the wraps off of reports about Android TV, Google House, Put on OS Assistant, you identify it. If this had been virtually some other firm, we’d be involved that there’s nothing left to debate.

However that is Google. The following few days are going to be jam-packed with developer information and an entire lot of data across the firm’s consumer-facing choices over the following yr and past. Android, Assistant, Put on OS, search and the like are going to take heart stage when the corporate kicks off the festivities tomorrow on the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View.

You’d higher imagine we’ll be on-hand bringing you the entire related info because it breaks. Within the meantime, right here’s a few of what you possibly can count on from the large present.

Android P

The newest model of Google’s cell working system appears prone to take heart stage right here — be it Peppermint Patty, Pudding or Popsicle. The primary developer preview of 9.zero dropped in March of this yr, and I/O is prone to be the launching pad of the following massive one. Given how a lot of Oreo’s adjustments occurred behind the scenes, it stands to cause that we’re in for a extra consumer-facing replace for the OS this day out.

We’ve already seen a little bit of these visible updates, together with new notifications and a few upgrades setting the stage for the almost ubiquitous prime notch. That, by most accounts, gained’t be going away any time quickly. “Materials Design 2” is a buzzword that’s been floating round for just a few months now to explain the primary main overhaul to the OS’s aesthetic in about 4 years, bringing an total flatter and extra common design language to Android.

We’ll additionally seemingly get some extra perception right into a gesture-based navigation that takes some cues from the iPhone X.


Assistant has been a linchpin in Google’s ecosystem play for just a few years now, and its significance is simply prone to develop. Bulletins over the previous couple of weeks have broadened the corporate’s Siri/Alexa competitor to much more classes, together with Android TV and Put on OS, so most likely don’t do an Assistant-related ingesting recreation tomorrow, until you’re gunning for alcohol poisoning.

It additionally appears pretty seemingly that we’ll see extra units on this entrance. A second model of Google House appears overdue. That would properly get an Echo-like replace, bringing it in control with the remainder of the road. And what of all of these Sensible Shows the corporate talked up again at CES? Issues have been fairly quiet on that entrance — maybe slightly too quiet.

Count on partnerships galore. The corporate confirmed off a Fandango Motion simply this week — and that’s prone to solely be the tip of the iceberg.


Synthetic intelligence has additionally been gaining loads of steam on the Google campus. AI and ML have been the driving forces in key choices like Translate, Lens and, in fact, Assistant, which the corporate is trying to actually distinguish from the competitors. The corporate’s TensorFlow machine studying engine goes to get lots of consideration.

Google additionally only recently took the wraps off the Lenovo-branded Daydream headset, setting the stage for some massive VR speak at this week’s present. In fact, the corporate appears much more content material to deal with augmented actuality today. The tech has been a spotlight not too long ago on Pixel units, as the corporate seems to tell apart ARCore from Apple’s ARKit. Now’s the time for the corporate to essentially double down on what’s changing into a increasingly more vital piece of cell tech.

Put on OS

It is a robust one. Google already revealed some Assistant options for the newly rebranded wearable working system, maybe in an try to construct slightly pleasure round what, by most accounts, has been a fairly stagnant product class for the corporate. Wearables usually have been on a little bit of a downward trajectory and Google particularly hasn’t completed quite a bit to alter that.

The corporate actually wants to come back in with weapons blazing right here and reassert itself within the class. Assistant integration will do a bit to assist invigorate the corporate, however count on to see Google do a significantly better job laying out what the way forward for wearables will seem like below the brand new rebrand.

Google I/O kicks off tomorrow. You possibly can observe alongside right here. 

Evaluating Apple, Google and Microsoft’s schooling performs


At present’s Apple occasion in Chicago was about extra than simply exhibiting off new and software program within the classroom — the corporate was reasserting itself as a significant participant in schooling. The class has lengthy been a lynchpin in Apple’s technique — one thing that Steve Jobs held close to and expensive.

Any ’80s child will inform you that Apple was a pressure to be reckoned with — Apple computer systems had been mainstays in pc labs throughout the nation. It’s all the time been a very good match for an organization centered on serving creators, bringing that additional little bit of pizzazz to the classroom. Lately, nevertheless, there’s been a significant shift. The Chromebook has turn into the king of the classroom, thanks in no small half to the cheap and restricted spec necessities.

Based mostly on Google’s early positioning of the class, it seems that the Chromebook’s classroom success even managed to catch its creators off-guard. The corporate has since fortunately embraced that success — whereas Microsoft seems to have shifted its personal method in response to Chrome OS’s success.

Apple’s personal responses have been much less direct, and immediately’s occasion was a reconfirmation of the corporate’s dedication to the iPad because the centerpiece of its academic play. If Apple may be seen as reacting, it’s within the worth of the product. Gone are the times that faculties’ whole digital technique revolved round a bunch of stationary desktops in a dusty outdated pc lab.

However whereas schooling has been a chunk of the iPad technique for the reason that product launched eight years in the past subsequent month, the pill was lengthy price-prohibitive. The corporate has addressed that via faculty reductions and decreasing the general value of the road, because the pill market has began to stagnate, however the final couple of upgrades have dropped pricing all the way down to a much more approachable $ 299.

A one-iPad-per-child method continues to be out of the realm of loads of public faculties, but it surely’s simple to see how the product may very well be interesting for varsity IT managers trying to roll out the iPad cart to school rooms. And additions like Managed Apple IDs have made it simpler for a number of children to share the identical machine, as a cost-cutting measure.

Together with devoted academic software program, the corporate demonstrated how present apps like Clips and Storage Band may be repurposed inside the academic context to assist carry a stage of multimedia interactivity to the educational course of. The corporate even sat us down in school rooms immediately to stroll us via a few of these initiatives.

After all, proper now, the market is Google’s to lose. The corporate reportedly controls round 60 p.c of the market. Very similar to Android, the guts of Chrome OS’s method is an embrace of third-party producers, which have helped maintain the associated fee down.

Faculties with tight budgets can choose up a dirt-cheap Chromebook for $ 100-$ 150 lower than an iPad. It’s simple to see how that’s an interesting proposition, particularly when damaged items are simply par for the course within the palms of scholars.

Regardless of its success, Google’s actually not an island. Yesterday’s announcement of the primary Chromebook pill was each a response to Apple’s involvement within the area and a preemptive strike towards immediately’s occasion, although the brand new Acer machine is definitely $ 30 costlier than Apple’s academic low cost. The corporate kind of shot itself within the foot on that one, however count on to see extra competitively priced slates from different companions.

Microsoft held its personal schooling occasion in Might of final yr, exhibiting off its resolution to Chrome OS. To this point, nevertheless, Home windows 10 S has been sort of a multitude, thanks in no small half to some fairly convoluted messaging on the corporate’s half. The corporate plans to streamline issues a bit by making 10 S a mode within Home windows 10.

The concept is principally the identical, both manner, providing a stripped-down model of the working system that may be locked down from exterior apps, so academics can ensure that nothing unseemly makes its manner onto the machine. It takes much less of a toll on the , with the corporate introducing a brand new line of PCs beginning at $ 189 — a transparent swipe on the Google’s dominance.

In actual fact, the corporate got here out and mentioned as a lot within the accompanying press materials, saying the merchandise had been “the identical worth as Chromebooks, with not one of the compromises.” And whereas Google’s on-line workplace functions have grown in reputation, Microsoft software program continues to be practically ubiquitous in places of work, so there’s one thing to be mentioned for prepping children for the actual world via use of such functions.

Nokia acquires Unium, a mesh WiFi startup that works with Google Fiber, as a part of large dwelling WiFi push


Whereas Nokia’s former handset enterprise forges forward with its new gadget technique beneath licensee HMD, Nokia itself has taken yet another step to construct out its enterprise with carriers in a brand new wave of providers. To coincide with MWC in Barcelona and an even bigger step into the WiFi enterprise, the corporate in the present day introduced that it has acquired Unium, a startup out of Seattle that builds know-how for mesh WiFi for dwelling networking providers.

Unium’s tech is used to handle one of many greatest pain-points in dwelling WiFi in the present day: it helps fill in lifeless spots in dwelling WiFi preparations, the place it’s possible you’ll not get sign or interference from different networks, and the accompanying safety points which may come alongside these.

Unium and Nokia’s focus can be to increase gigabit networks inside the dwelling, past the offers that Nokia already has in areas like neighborhood and rural broadband, and fiber to the house, and extra particularly with its dwelling gateway options, which in the present day introduced an prolonged portfolio of mesh WiFi gateways and beacons, new software program to improve gateways, and new software program for service suppliers and prospects to watch and optimise options.

“The Unium staff is worked up to affix Nokia and drive a singular and progressive buyer expertise by means of our clever Wi-Fi answer, making each customer-touch higher,” mentioned Martha Bejar, CEO at Unium, in a press release.

Phrases of the deal haven’t been disclosed however we’re looking for out. Unium had raised no less than $ 26.7 million in funding because it was based in 2002, based on Crunchbase. Previously generally known as CoCo Communications, its backers included native investor Swiftsure Capital, amongst others. The latest valuation based on PitchBook was was $ 7.31M after their late stage spherical in August of 2017, though that is probably very outdated.

Notably, Unium’s prospects included Google Fiber, certainly one of Alphabet’s high-speed web efforts, and — earlier — the Division of Protection.

“Like many individuals, we had difficulties with the WiFi in our properties together with lifeless spots, buffering of flicks, and music that stopped mid-song. In 2013, we determined to unravel these issues primarily based on our decade of expertise working with the U.S. Division of Protection to unravel their wi-fi and safety issues. Folks deserve higher WiFi,” the corporate’s former CEO John Stachowiak mentioned again in 2016. “That’s the mentality that Google Fiber and our different prospects have, too.”

Now we have requested Nokia what occurs to contracts with present prospects as a part of this deal.

Unium’s answer hyperlinks in with these of carriers in a “plug & play” format and implies that when you reside notably in properties with thick partitions, you’ll be able to transfer round with out dropping WiFi sign.

Unium matches into the development of a few of Nokia’s most up-to-date acquisitions, which underscore the corporate’s makes an attempt to maneuver deeper into areas to work extra carefully with carriers. Different acquisitions in that vein have included Comptel for software-based knowledge communications for carriers, and a few safety acquisitions, Nakina Techniques and Deepfield.

(Notably, Nokia’s $ 190 million acquisition of French related gadget maker Withings, made to increase the corporate’s personal consumer-focused IoT technique, has been much less fruitful and the corporate is presently re-evaluating its wearable division total.)

This, you may argue, is about Nokia in search of methods so as to add extra worth right into a enterprise that’s already sizeable for it. The corporate mentioned that its tech is in 47 million dwelling gateways globally, in partnership with carriers and others, giving it a head begin for the place it is going to deploy Unium’s tech.

“We stay up for having the Unium staff be part of us,” mentioned Federico Guillén, president of Nokia’s Fastened Networks enterprise group, mentioned in a press release. “The house networking market is booming and whole-home Wi-Fi is a key enabler for this. At present’s Wi-Fi options nonetheless have severe points with sticky shoppers, interference, protection gaps and capability points. With Unium inside, our Nokia Wi-Fi answer will ship an unmatched person expertise, going past what normal mesh Wi-Fi options ship in the present day.”

Nokia mentioned the deal is predicted to shut in Q1 2018.

Russian court turns down appeal from Google in anti-monopoly case


Russian court turns down appeal from Google in anti-monopoly case

Moscow (Reuters) – A Russian court yesterday rejected an appeal against Google in an anti-monopoly case preinstalled apps on mobile devices with the Android operating system, reported Interfax news agency

Earlier, Russia’s anti-monopoly watchdog FAS imposed 438000000 rubles ($ 6.83 million) fine on Google after ruling that the company has violated Russian anti-monopoly rules.

(Reporting by Alexander Wen, writing by Denis Pinchuk)