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Collections turn one!

Today Google+ Collections is turning one! Yes, that's right, it has been a full year since the Google+ team launched Collections and what a year it has been. Google+ Collections revolve around the interests of people and immediately people flocked to create and organize their posts around what they love. From Astrology to Sports, just like apps, there's a Collection for that.

I'm proud to be a part of Google+ and with that said I'm proud to announce that I have four Collections with over 100k followers: Android Ecosystem, General Technology, Chrome Ecosystem and NBA. No, it is not the number that matters, instead it is way that the Google+ team has promoted plussers' content so that others who find themselves interested in specific topics can follow along as well.

I'm not going to sit here and tell you that I was 100% on board with the idea of Collections. In fact, I didn't know what to expect. However, I'm glad I went along for the ride because Collections have changed the way people on Google+ post and follow their favorite topics. With that said, if you're still on the fence with regards to creating Collections, I suggest you try it (what's the worst that can happen?) and maybe you too will find yourself enjoying the ride that is Google+ Collections.

#CollectionsTurn1
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5/4/16
4 Photos - View album

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The Google I/O 2017 ticket application window is now open! However, there's no need to rush because you can apply until Feb 27 at 5PM PST. Keep in mind, applicants will be selected at random once the drawing has closed, and results will be announced via email on February 28th. If selected, you will have to pay either $1,150 for general admission or $375 for academic admission.

#Google #io17

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The Google Photos web app now allows you to see which album a photo belongs to. To view which album a picture is in, simply click the (i) button that this located on the top right of the screen, and you'll be able to see all the photo information you have always been able to see, as well as the new album info.

#GooglePhotos

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One of the more useful features of the Amazon Echo (or any other Alexa- compatible device) is the ability to order items online by just speaking to the device. Now, Google is rolling out the ability to shop using Google Assistant on Google Home.

With "smart shopping" on Google Home, you'll be able to order from participating Google Express retailers, including Costco, Whole Foods Market, Walgreens, PetSmart, Bed Bath & Beyond and more. To get started, open the Google Home app, tap the hamburger menu, select “More settings,” and then scroll down to “Payments.”  From there, you can add your shipping address and payment information. Once you have that set up, you can order items by using your voice—just say "OK Google." For example, you can say "Ok Google, order paper towels,” or if you're unsure of how to order using Google Assistant just say " Ok Google, how do I shop?”

#GoogleAssistant #GoogleHome #GoogleExpress

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This! Please don't take speculation​ from unknown media sources as fact. There's just not enough information on Fuchsia and Andromeda readily available to judge what both can or will be.

"So please, when you see Fuchsia mentioned, or speculation that it "is" Andromeda, know that it is just that: speculation. Last we heard from sources we consider extremely reliable, Android was the basis of Andromeda, and Andromeda would see its commercial debut on a new Pixel laptop later this year. It is possible Google has changed plans around Andromeda, that the initiative itself may have even been scrapped. Though, we have no reason to think so - it's more that we don't know, and haven't heard anything about Andromeda in quite some time."

#Google #Fuchsia #Andromeda

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Since launching, Google has added a bunch of new capabilities to Google Home, most notably smart home integration. Now, according to The Wall Street Journal, Google is working on adding the ability to make and receive phone calls through Google Home. The feature, which could launch later this year, will reportedly use VOIP. to enable phone functionality. Notably, Amazon has also been working on a similar feature for Echo, but has faced some delays.

The WSJ states that both Google and Amazon are facing similar issues that relate to adding emergency services. Specifically, adding emergency services would require either the user or the company (Google or Amazon) pay the $1 monthly fee. Privacy is another issue. The WSJ notes that there may be "consumer anxiety over speaking on a device that has the ability to record conversations.”

#Google #Amazon

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Amidst rumors that Apple's next iPhone will feature wireless charging, Apple has joined the Wireless Power Consortium and is now listed as one of the 213 members. Apple was not listed in a cached version of the webpage from last week. If you're unfamiliar, the Wireless Power Consortium is the group behind Qi, the wireless charging standard that uses both inductive and resonant charging technologies to allow devices to charge with cords.

While the Wireless Power Consortium promotes the use of a single wireless charging standard, that doesn't mean Apple will fully support the technology. In fact, Apple already uses Qi wireless charging with Apple Watch, but the company uses a tweaked version that prevents Apple Watch owners from using other Qi chargers. It's likely that Apple will do the same with the next iPhone.

#Apple #WirelessPowerConsortium #Qi

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We already know Google's developer conference, Google I/O, will be held on May 17-19th at Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California. There's only one problem— nobody has tickets yet. Fear not, Google has announced that this year's application period will held from February 22 at 10AM PST until February 27 at 5PM PST. As with previous years, Google will use a lottery system to randomly pick out applicants, so nobody gets preferential treatment.

#Google #io17

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According to The Verge¹, who cited sources familiar with the change, Google is combining the product teams working on YouTube Music and Google Play Music into a single unit. While both apps will continue to exist independently, The Verge says it's likely that the two will merge into a single unified music app from Google.

A Google spokesperson confirmed the two teams were combining and offered the following statement: “Music is very important to Google and we’re evaluating how to bring together our music offerings to deliver the best possible product for our users, music partners and artists. Nothing will change for users today and we’ll provide plenty of notice before any changes are made.”

I for one hope that the end result is a new unified music app because, currently, it makes no sense for Google to offer two separate music offerings that share similar qualities. For example, both offer a free tier, but they also offer subscription services that add additional features. Not to mention, subscribing to one of the two gives you access to both services. A unified app would definitely reduce consumer confusion.

#Google #YouTube #GooglePlayMusic

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Sorting through internal information has become increasingly complex as more and more companies move their data to the cloud. Last year, Google announced Springboard (preview), an enterprise tool that uses machine learning to help companies quickly and easily sort through their corporate information across G Suite. Today, Google has announced that they are renaming Springboard to Google Cloud Search and rolling it out globally to customers using G Suite Business and Enterprise editions.

Google Cloud Search leverages machine learning and the power of Google Search to provide a unified experience across G Suite. When you open the app on your phone or laptop, the first thing you'll see is relevant information organized into "assist cards." Assist cards are designed to be timely and relevant, so as the product learns, more cards will be added to help you navigate your work day more efficiently.

In addition, you can also search for people listed in your company's directory. Upon searching for someone, you'll see the person's contact information, as well as events and files you have in common. With just a tap, you'll also be able to send an email, make a call, or start a Hangout. Furthermore, privacy wIll remain a top priority. Cloud Search will respect G Suite's file sharing permissions and only allow people to search for files they have access to.

#Google #CloudSearch #GSuite
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