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All posts tagged "Google"

  • YouTube Backstage is Google’s incoming Facebook rival

    Does Google have plans to turn YouTube into a Facebook pretender? According to a report by VentureBeat, yes. Dubbed YouTube Backstage, the feature will bring a social media element to the video sharing and hosting site. The report suggests that Backstage will let users share "photos, polls, links, text posts, and videos with their subscribers". Much like Facebook's Timeline, Backstage's content will also be displayed in reverse chronological order, and will become an integral part of the YouTube channel layout. It's set to gain its own top tab too. YouTube Backstage will bring Facebook-like content to Google's video platform This isn't simply a...

  • 12 important space missions, events to look forward to in 2017

    The year has already seen a variety of landmark space missions taking place. There were the Falcon 9's successful first stage landings, the Juno probe's Jupiter rendezvous and the longest stay at the International Space Station. Next year promises to be another bumper year for unmanned and manned spaceflight, so what should we expect? We listed 12 space missions and major events to watch out for in 2017. Boeing to test its manned capsule Boeing is hard at work on its CST-100 Starliner capsule, hoping to beat SpaceX to the manned mission punch. The CST-100 Starliner capsule can lift up to seven astronauts to orbit...

  • Google Hangouts will be punted for business use, company exec explains

    Google, after I/O 2016, vehemently denied it will be killing Hangouts after it announced two new chat apps, but the company has been mum on what that meant for the service. Thanks to new remarks from Google's Nick Fox, we can now prepare to see Hangouts rebranded as a business-orientated service. Speaking to Engadget's Nathan Ingraham, the VP of communications Fox explains that Google's two new chat apps -- video calling service Duo, and search-enhanced chat app Allo -- will pilot the company's consumer messaging division. On Gearburn: Google I/O 2016: Allo and Duo apps revealed Hangouts will be refocused as a...

  • Google Duo video calling app now available in South Africa

    Google's new video calling app, Google Duo, is now officially available on the Play Store in South Africa. Google Duo was announced earlier this year at the company's I/O 2016 conference in California, where it's companion chat app Allo was also unveiled. Duo allows users to place video calls to other users in similar vein to Apple's Facetime app. Duo also ties to phone numbers, which means users don't necessarily need a Google account to use the service. Calls are also encrypted from end-to-end, and to further set it apart from other chat apps, it has a "Knock Knock" feature, which...

  • Google’s Alternative Olympics medal table sheds light on small countries’ achievements

    After winning 26 gold medals, it's not delusional to believe the US is running away the Rio Olympic Games. At the time of writing, the 554-strong team have collectively won 69 medals, which dwarfs Great Britain and China's achievements. Still, the medals table doesn't really take into account other factors, like population, a country's general affluence or even, uh, overall Google Search rankings. That's where Google's alternative medals table comes into play. Ranking teams by more than just the "look at all my medals" philosophy, the visualisation allows visitors to understand just how big an achievement winning a single medal (gold...

  • Pokemon Go gets childhood-ruining NSFW parody, continues odd trend

    If Pokemon Go hasn't yet ruined your childhood memories of the boy wonder Ash Ketchum and his troop of merry monsters, this surely will. Thanks to a few crafty comedians, a new Pokemon Go parody will be debuting on the internet soon, but it's absolutely, completely and utterly NSFW. If playing Pokemon Go at work hasn't got you suspended yet, this almost definitely will. Created by Brazzers, the video dubbed Pornstar Go: A XXX Parody, debuted on Monday and has been throwing a few meowths among the pidgeys, so to speak. The protagonist of the video (according to the NSFW trailer)...

  • YouTube Live: 4 ways businesses can use Google’s streaming app

    Faced with stiff competition from Facebook, Twitter, and a handful of upstarts, Google-owned YouTube has announced it will be adding a live mobile streaming option to its own native app. This is according to YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki and other company officials. Introducing YouTube Live: Google's mobile streaming app Over the past 15-odd months, such platforms as Periscope, Facebook Live, and Meerkat have risen from obscurity and quickly become some of the hottest social networking platforms on the internet. And though YouTube has had live streaming features on its desktop platform for years, the company has been noticeably absent in terms...

  • Google wants to project holograms of super famous people using drones

    It seems Google's mad scientists have been playing a little Killzone: Shadow Fall recently. The Mountain View tech giant wants to build smart drones that will output images onto screens, or virtual people onto stages. "A mobile teleprescence system," remarks Google's patent application, "may include a frame, a propulsion system operable couples to the frame to propel the frame through a designated space". This frame will also include an "image output device" while it will be propelled by "rotors at opposite end portions". But why on earth would anyone or any company want to use something like this? Other than it being...

  • Quadrooter: 900m Qualcomm Android phones vulnerable to security flaw

    The latest set of smartphone nasties floating around the internet has a pretty cool name, but could very well leave your own phone at risk. Dubbed Quadrooter, the set of four flaws affect all Qualcomm-powered smartphones running Android, which means around 65% of the LTE smartphone market, or 900-million smartphones in total. According to CheckPoiunt, the vulnerabilities could leave users' devices rooted, and open to remote access. These vulnerabilities can be targeted through the installation of a malicious app. But only one vulnerability needs to be exploited. In that event, an "attacker can trigger privilege escalations for the purpose of...

  • Google Phone app now warns users of spam calls

    Great news for those constantly hassled by insurances companies who want your money (and soul). This week, everyone's non-evil company Google announced that it will now warn users of incoming spam callers through its Google Phone app. Now, this announcement won't be useful for everyone. The app -- available natively through Google's Android One and Nexus programmes -- is not yet available for those not running on Android Marshmallow or above. Still, it's a tale of the future. On Gearburn: Android One arrives in Africa with the $90 Infinix Hot 2 The company notes that the feature can now be switched on...

  • Google Maps now features ‘Areas Of Interest’ with cleaner aesthetic

    Google Maps' latest update now allows users to get a more up to date sense of what's happening in their surrounding areas. It also brings a few UI improvements. To achieve a cleaner look, the company has gone for a more subtle and balanced colour scheme and removed unwanted elements like road outlines. The new look, according to the company, allows users to see helpful and actionable information like traffic and transit a lot clearer. "We’ve improved the typography of street names, points of interest, transit stations, and more to make them more distinguishable from other things on the map, helping...

  • 11 Google Now voice commands worth remembering

    Voice assistants are all the rage now but, alongside Siri, Google Now has played a major role in the current trend of smart, voice-enabled apps. There are loads of commands, queries and questions you can pose Google's effort, but which ones are worth noting? We already know commands like texting/calling contacts, weather forecasts and trivia answers, but here are some more interesting ones. Find sports scores Google doesn't care about the sports I like (MMA, Formula 1), but did you know you can ask it about scores/results for more traditional fare? "Who won Euro 2016?" or "what's the score between England and Pakistan?" will serve up...

  • Google Search improves for holiday makers, simplifies online shopping

    Google wants to make searching, booking and paying for your December holiday an easier affair, according to its new additions to Google Search. The company this week announced that it will "make travel planning and mobile shopping easier" thanks to a few new ad-centric features. Firstly, the company's beefing up its search algorithm to give users more acute holiday-making results tuned to specific queries. For instance, Google notes that it'll "now give people the option to filter Hotel search results based on specific needs". Google's simplifying jet-setting "For example, travelers can filter based on rating or price with one tap on their...

  • Google Hangouts for Android gains video messaging, loses SMS merging

    Google vehemently denied at its I/O 2016 conference that it would be ditching Hangouts in favour of its two new chat apps. And good news, because it doesn't seem that it was lying. The company has now added video messaging to Google Hangouts, which puts it in line with some of the other major chats apps. And speaking of major chat apps, the iOS version of Hangouts has had this feature since 2014. According to 9to5 Google, a non-official APK is currently available for those brave enough to dally with video messaging. The feature works similarly to sending a voice note...

  • Oscar Pistorius: social media slams sentence, global search spikes

    After three years of back-and-forth legal battles, Oscar Pistorius has been sentenced to six-years behind bars for shooting and murdering Reeva Steenkamp. The legal journey's ups and downs, twists and turns is something South Africa, and the world, has been following attentively. The trial will likely be remembered as South Africa's first real public trial fuelled by social media reaction. But what does that mean? We asked the folk over at YouKnow, a South African social media analytics company, to scrub the depths of social media for reactions before during and post-sentencing. And well, the results are pretty interesting. Oscar Pistorius' sentence...