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All posts tagged "Google"

  • Google brings more specific traffic alerts to SA

    Checking your smartphone for commute times has become the norm for millions of people around the world. Google pioneered this function with Google Now, but Apple and Microsoft were quick to copy the feature for their respective platforms. The Mountain View company stepped its game up in November last year, moving beyond generic "25 minutes to work" alerts. Instead, the company delivered specific traffic notifications in Google Maps, offering spoken alerts and notifications about traffic conditions. Now, South Africans, Nigerians and Kenyans can get in on the action too, the company announced. "Just in time for you to hit the road, we're updating Google Maps with new traffic alerts to...

  • Google promises to train one million Africans in digital skills

    There's no doubting that internet penetration, digital skills and economic growth are closely entwined. So it comes as no surprise to hear that Google has announced a "commitment" to train one million Africans in digital skills in the space of a year. Google confirmed the news in a blog post and a press statement, saying it is supporting non-profit Livity Africa to run two free digital skills programmes in Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa. "A group of 65 Googlers from nine different countries have helped Livity develop content, provide mentorship and, in some cases, deliver the training," it added. "The internet is at the heart of...

  • Google provides seed funding to Taiwanese renewable energy program

    Google is concerned about the well being of the environment and has provided seed funding to a renewable energy company based in Taiwan. This is not the first investment in a green company either. To date, Google has acquired about two gigawatts of renewable energy, an equivalent of taking nearly one million cars off the road, making it the world's largest non-utility purchaser of renewables. Google has provided seed funding to the Center for Resource Solutions (CRS) in a bid to provide all of its data centers around the world with renewable energy, a commitment the company has made in which...

  • ‘Jacob Zuma’ more popular than ‘April Fools Day’ on Google

    President Jacob Zuma tonight took to the Luthuli House podium to comment on the Constitutional Court's ruling regarding upgrades made to his Nkandla homestead. He declared his innocence, and claimed that he did not deliberately act against the Constitution. He also stated that he acknowledges and respects the Constitutional Court's ruling, which will require him to pay for some of these non-security upgrades. Ultimately however, it seems that general sentiment of the country -- at least on social media -- was that the President would resign tonight. That definitely didn't happen. Instead, there's another takeaway, at least for the data lovers...

  • Google wins, loses on April Fool’s Day

    It's that time of the year, when tech firms and news websites decide to leap on the April Fool's bandwagon. As usual, Google decided to go all-out, delivering some hits and a rather unfortunate miss. Gmail offers a "mic drop" option  The mega-popular email service introduced a rather odd mic drop function button as an alternative to the "send" button. This allowed users to add a GIF of a Minion dropping a microphone into messages. The function also allows you to "have the last word" in email threads, banishing the thread to your archives. The prank proved to be short-lived however, as the Gmail team disabled...

  • Search traffic spikes in South Africa after Nkandla #ConCourt ruling

    South Africa's Constitutional Court -- the highest court in the land -- has today ruled that President Jacob Zuma and the National Assembly acted against the Constitution, and has thus been ordered to pay back some of the public money spent on his Nkandla homestead. President Zuma's Nkandla homestead has been under considerable scrutiny by opposition parties and the public protector after it was revealed that R246-million of the national budget was used for upgrades -- some of which Zuma will have to pay back within 45 days of today's judgement. Following the ruling, South Africans are taking to search engines...

  • WordPress now supports Google’s AMP, enabling its sites to load faster on mobile

    Wordpress has announced that it now supports Accelerated Mobile Pages, Google's ambitious project that wants to make the web load faster on mobile. Introduced in October 2015, the project, AMP, uses an open source HTML code framework to enable sites to load faster on mobile, an idea that is similar to Facebook's Instant Articles. The Automattic owned Wordpress.com is one of the first companies to support AMP. In a blog post, the company said users will now start to see their sites loading faster on mobile. WordPress users will not have to set up AMP, it will be automatic. On...

  • Boston Dynamics’ Atlas robot is now totally bully-proof

    For now, a big part of robotics hinges on human engineering. But what happens when a robot proverbially grows its own brain and acts on its volition, perhaps even against humans themselves? In Boston Dynamics' latest video, the robotics company showcases Atlas droid, an electrically powered and hydraulically actuated robot. This bot can perform different and menial tasks, from opening doors, or picking up boxes. But it's a lot like a human too: it has a knack for stumbling on snow, and it even puts up with its fair share of bullying from its creators themselves. In the video, Atlas is pushed...

  • Weekly Round Up #52: Bookmarks shortlist, Google Play Movies, Twitter, Hisense

    Welcome to Weekly Roundup, our podcast discussing the latest tech trends, innovation and news from the last few days. This week on BurnCast, Senior Reporter Stuart Thomas talks to Gearburn Editor Andy Walker and Reporter Graham van der Made. The team talks about the Bookmarks Awards shortlist, Google Play Movies, Twitter launching GIF search and video support in DMs and Hisense's life-proof smartphone. The team speaks about what they are watching, reading and listening to. As for the Tweet of the week? There are too many to choose from, so simply search for #SonaDebate on Twitter and you will find plenty...

  • Google Play Movies officially available on South African screens

    Hot on the heels of Google Music's South African bow, Google has now announced that Google Play Movies is available in the country. The service will allow users to "to rent or purchase movies for watching on their phones, tablets, computers and smart TVs," explains the press release. It's not quite a streaming service however, and it doesn't offer any series at launch. There's also a massive hole left by the lack of local South African content, but Google SA "hopes to make these available soon." Read more: Google Play Music launches in SA at R50 a month The service does however offer...

  • Google Translate now supports over 100 languages

    Google Translate is turning ten this year and to celebrate coming of age it has added 13 new languages to its translating capabilities. When the service launched in 2016, it could only translate between English and Arabic, Chinese and Russian. From today, 103 languages will be covered which includes 99% of the online population, according to Google. The 13 new languages add 120-million new people to the billions who can already communicate with Translate all over the world, Googles notes. Late last year, Google announced that more than one million people speaking 117 languages had made 50-million contributions through the Google Translate...

  • Weekly Round Up #50: Alphabet beats Apple, Travelstart’s $40m, Uber’s new logo, smartphone rumours

    Welcome to Weekly Roundup, our podcast discussing the latest tech trends, innovation and news from the last few days. This week on BurnCast, Senior Reporter Stuart Thomas talks to Gearburn Editor Andy Walker and Reporter Jacques Coetzee. The team talks about Alphabet becoming the most valuable company in the world, Travelstart raising a cool US$40-million from Amadeus Capital Partners and MTN, Uber's new rather bizarre looking logo and the new round of rumours when it comes to smartphones. The team speaks about what they are watching, reading and listening to. And the Tweet of the week has something to do with South...

  • Google Photos gets collaborative shared albums feature

    Google today announced its new Google Photos feature dubbed Shared Albums, which allows users to share their Google Photos with friends and family. The feature helps in assisting users build new memories of an event. Instead of only looking at your own photos of that family gathering that took years to organise, people can now share the photos and videos right from within Google Photos. Shared Albums builds a link of the selected photos and videos and users can share it on Facebook, Whatsapp, Hangouts, and other platforms. Read more: Google Photos update lets you free up space, downgrade photos "With...

  • Google Calendar gets Reminders, enables tracking to-dos in app

    The Google Calendar app, both for Android and iOS, is getting a new Reminders feature. According to Google, this feature will allow users to create reminders in Google Calendar, enabling the user to track all scheduled events and appointments. Google says that Reminders will stick around on users' calendars until they have been completed. Instead of going away when the set date passes, like normal events, Reminders will sit on top of the calendar, making it easy to see them, ensuring that users do not miss an important appointment. Once a task is completed, a user can swipe the...

  • Google Search now allows you to star, bookmark images

    Google Search is receiving a new feature. As it matures, it can only get better, and Google appears to be committed to seeing this happen. In the latest update, Google has introduced a new feature to mobile searches that allows users to bookmark images from their mobile browser. It's basically a Pinterest for Google Search. For the feature to work, users need to be logged into a Google account. The process of doing so is seamless too. When a user finds an image they want to save, all they have to do is to select and star it and the image will...