Tag Archives: Google
I wasn't able to get into Google I/O this year. I wasn't the only one, the two day developer event in San Francisco, which is limited to 5000 attendees in San Francisco, sold out in 59 minutes.
In response to the enormous demand, Google set up over 110 free Google I/O Extended live viewing parties around the world where the keynotes and selected sessions are shown on the big screen. At the I/O keynote Vic Gundotra announced that the I/O Extended event in Cairo was the biggest, drawing over 1000 people.
I'm spending the day at I/O Extended at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California which is just down the road from Google's headquarters. In addition to the streamed I/O sessions there's food, coffee, WiFi and lots of power outlets.
The main announcements today at I/O were:
- A new Android OS 3.1 version (still called Honeycomb) which is available immediately for Xoom tablets. It features resizable Widgets (a live Gmail widget that can be zoomed to full screen was demoed) and USB host mode which makes accessory game controllers possible, among other things.
- The followup to 3.1 was previewed. To be called "Ice Cream Sandwich": it will ship in the 4th quarter of this year. Unlike Honeycomb, which is for tablets only, Ice Cream Sandwich will work across all types of devices including phones, tablets, TVs and gaming devices. Developers will be able to build apps that adapt to different devices to do things like show the app's menu as a sidebar on a tablet and as a popup on a phone. Ice Cream Sandwich also includes an Open Accessory API which lets developers integrate Android devices with other devices. This was demoed with an exercise bike that when connected to an Android phone prompts the user to download an app that lets the user compete in a race game using the bike and also tracks and charts their performance
- In move that should go a long way to counter complaints of Android fragmentation, Google announced new commitments from a number of major Android OEMs and operators to provide timely OS upgrades to all new devices for 18 months. Participating manufacturers and operators include HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon and Vodafone.
- Movie rentals are now available in Android Market. Pricing is $1.99 for for 24 hours and movies can be streamed or downloaded on PC, tablet or phone.
- Google's music service, which was previewed at last year's I/O is finally available, though only as a limited Beta. I/O attendees get immediate access to the Beta, the rest on us can apply at music.google.com. Thanks the music industry's intransigence, there is no music purchase or rental component. Instead the service allows users to store up to 20,000 of their own songs in the cloud and access them from any device complete with album art, track info and user ratings. Importing music from iTunes is supported.
Most of the first day's announcements weren't unexpected. Although movie rentals and Google Music seem to be getting the most coverage I think the agreement to provide OS updates to Android devices is potentially the biggest deal. Or not depending on how Google enforces it. There are obviously some limits on devices updates. The announcement mentioned that the update policy agreement only applies to "new" devices so don't count on updates for phones that are already in the market. Also future Android releases are likely to to have hardware requirements that older requirements don't meet. I just hope that Google doesn't let vendors claim that a device isn't compatible when it actually is.
Based on past I/Os, I expect the biggest announcements tomorrow. I suspect we will see a Chrome OS announcement of some sort and perhaps something new from Google in the social media area.
This year's awesome I/O swag was an unrelesed Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Android tablet that was given to all 5000 attendees at the San Francisco event.
If you use Google's AdSense platform to to serve ads on your desktop or mobile sites you can now check your earnings with your mobile browser.
Google's new AdSense Mobile web interface opens up to show your current day's earnings, total unpaid earnings and the amount of your last payment. You can also pull up graphs showing your daily earnings for the last 7 or 30 days or for the current or previous months as well as any custom reports you have defined.
The mobile interface should be served automatically to mobile browsers visiting goggle.com/adsense provided you have opted into using the "new" AdSense interface. If you don't see it the direct URL of the mobile interface is currently https://www.google.com/adsense/v3/m/home.
Unlike with some of Google's recent mobile webapps which only seem to work with the iPhone and Android browsers, this one is relatively cross platform. The mobile version came up automatically for me using the WebOS, bada and Symbian^3 browsers and with Opera Mini. It worked perfectly in all those browsers except the Symbian and bada ones where the graphs didn't display.
Via: Inside Adsense
The Asri's pps are essentially bookmarks which launch the GoogleWebApps in the Nokia browser. But they several advantages over normal browser bookmarks. For one, they have nice icons and look rather smart sitting in your Application folder or a Symbian^3 Shortcuts Widget on your home screen. Plus it's a lot easier and quicker to find and click a shinny icon on your home screen than it is to launch the browser, open your Bookmarks and scroll through lists and folders of browser bookmarks to find the one you want.
If your a traditionalist who prefers using bookmarks, just curious or want to try these on non Symbian phones, the apps open the following URLs:
Google Reader: www.google.com/reader/i/
Google Talk: talkgadget.google.com/talkgadget/m
Google Calendar: www.google.com/calendar/gp
All the Web Apps worked well on an N8. According to Asri, Calendar and Reader work best on touch screen Symbian phones but the others should work on any Symbian phone that supports WRT (all S60 3rd Edition FP1 and latter).
A new iOS and Android optimized mobile web version of Google Finance ( www.google.com/m/finance) was launched a couple of weeks ago. It looks (image above, left) and works great on the target devices and also on my Samsung Wave Bada phone,which I used to create the screen shots. However, the update has made mobile web version of Finance unusable for anyone using anything else.Visiting the site with Opera Mini, Opera Mobile or Symbian Webkit still brings up the legacy version of the mobile Finance site. However the financial news headlines that used to appear on the page have been replaced by the cryptic message "No results found for null" (image above, right). There is a search box and entering some , but not all, stock symbols or a company names brings up a quote and chart. NOK, GOOG and Sprint work but BP, S, T, C and Citibank return "No results found for" followed by your query.
Based on comments on the Google Mobile Help Forum the "No results..." issue affects BlackBerry and Windows Mobile users as well. Help appears to be on the way. Last Friday a Google employee named Laudy posted "Hi All-- Thanks for reporting. This was caused by the new mobile interface. The Google Finance team is aware of the Blackberry issue and a fix will be available shortly." Ah, the joys of cross-platform mobile web development.
For those who can't wait for the fix there are still several other ways to access your portfolios and Google Finance news on your phone. Clicking the "Classic" link at the bottom of the broken mobile site takes you to the desktop version of Google Finance. That works pretty well in the better mobile browsers including Opera Mini and Nokia Webkit. The desktop page is too large to load in most embedded feature phone browsers, though. Another approach that should work in almost all mobile browsers is add your portfolio or individual stock quotes to mobile iGoogle.
On Android and I presume iOS devices the new Finance webapp is actually quite nice. It features a tabbed user interface with three tabs. The default "Markets" tab (image top, left) displays a daily chart showing the DOW, NASDAQ and S&P 500's price movement. Below the chart are market news headlines, sector summaries and the day's top losers and gainers. A second tab displays your personal Google Finance portfolio, if you have one and invites you to create one if you don't. Clicking a quote in your portfolio brings up a chart and company news. The third "News" tab (image above, right) has more financial headlines. All three tabs have an "Quote" search box at the top for quick lookups.
All in all a nice update on the supported devices. Hopefully we will soon see a working version of Google Finance for all phones.