Fitbit joins other Google apps that have already gotten the MD3 treatment
Google is in the middle of a low-key UI refresh for it apps and services. Going back to last fall, we've been checking out the slow spread of a new interface for switching between multiple Google accounts, one that embraces modern Material You style. This week we're checking out what seems to be the latest app to make the change, as the new account switcher reaches the Fitbit app.
From the fanciest of foldables to the barest of budget phones, these deals are selling out fast
Just like that, Amazon Prime Day is done. We saw a lot of phone deals over the past two days, with lots of price fluctuations and with deals selling out and restocking several times. The good news is there are still some deals to be had if you're looking to save on your next daily driver. Both top-end premium phones and some great budget and midrange options make up a bulk of the latest and greatest in Android hardware, and companies like Google, Motorola, and OnePlus are still offering deep discounts on all sorts of their hardware. There's no telling how long these sales will last, so don't hesitate to jump on them while the savings are still good.
Never leave Gmail again when creating an event from an email
In 2021, Google Calendar introduced a feature that it should have had years ago: the ability to show others your availability when setting an appointment. While the feature was initially available only to Google Workspace Individual subscribers, it opened up for more Workspace accounts last year, as long as you're forking over $12 per month for the Workspace Business Standard plan or a pricier tier. Google finally announced in June that the appointment scheduling feature was coming to personal Google account owners as part of Calendar's integration with Gmail, and the company is now following through.
Project Tailwind has a new name and is now accepting testers
The AI revolution is well underway, and advanced language models like Google's PaLM 2 are at the heart of most recent breakthroughs. Google teased several new machine learning tools at I/O 2023, and the one that got the biggest reaction was something called Project Tailwind. In a demo, someone's notes and Google Docs files were used to generate detailed summaries about subjects that were addressed deep within the notes. Now, Google has given the utility has a new name and is finally opening it up to testing.
The best Google products at the lowest prices you can find on Prime Day
If you're in the market for a new phone, tablet, smart home accessories, headphones, or any other tech-related gadget, rest assured that Google offers some of the finest products in those categories. But new technology can be expensive, which is why Amazon Prime Day is an excellent chance to finally get your hands on that Google device you've had your eye on. Take a look at the best Prime Day deals for Google products, including phones, headphones, smartwatches, and more!
This unique experiment lets anyone guide a bird character named Viola as she plays a cello
Artificial intelligence is bringing changes to many areas, including the arts. Google's Arts & Culture team, known for using AI creatively, has introduced several artistic projects recently. One of these was the Blob Opera, a fun tool that used AI to let people compose their own music. Now, they have an even more inventive project called Viola the Bird.
Prepare for a much-needed redesign on third-party Android devices
Google’s At a Glance widget is a staple feature on Pixel phones that has evolved a lot over the years. On Google devices, it shows you all kinds of timely information, upcoming calendar events, and even lets you turn off your flashlight. This same widget is also available on virtually all other great Android phones, but it’s a lot more rudimentary and looks outdated, still sporting the look and feel it had on Android 11 with its centered style. That’s about to change, with a completely novel design different from what Pixel users get.
The company’s AR roadmap is looking increasingly blurred with the departure of Mark Lucovsky
Will the metaverse and augmented reality really change the way we access systems? Even with some really impressive stuff like Apple's Vision Pro on the way, it feels like much of the early hype is already starting to fade. We've already seen Google grappling with the fallout from the termination of its ambitious "Project Iris" earlier this year, and now the company faces yet another stumbling block on its rocky path towards augmented reality and mixed reality, with the unexpected resignation of Mark Lucovsky, its Senior Director of Engineering, Operating Systems, AR.
The app will now launch in edit mode by default
Google has done a lot to improve Docs after a barrage of updates to Workspace that represent the biggest set of improvements for the app in over a decade. For example, the addition of a pageless format was a massive symbolic change for the service, and Google went on to transform Docs into a dynamic smart canvas for your documents, with features like creating polls and assigning tasks to colleagues via @-mentions. However, editing a document hasn't been exactly straightforward, as Docs always defaults to view mode when you open the app on Android. This is finally changing with a new update.
Med-PaLM 2 is already in testing at Mayo Clinic
Google is a crucial player in pushing the boundaries of innovation as artificial intelligence technology has been developing quickly across several industries. The beta release of Bard, an outstanding language model capable of producing fresh content and offering conversational responses, seems like it was only the tip of Google's AI iceberg. The company has now unveiled Med-PaLM 2, an advanced medical chatbot that has the potential to transform the healthcare sector, building on the success of Bard.
The process has never been smoother
While two-factor authentication (2FA) via text messages (SMS) is still widely used, 2FA apps have become the bread and butter of online security, making it difficult for hackers to access your web accounts. Google Authenticator and Authy are two of the popular options currently available. However, a major turn-off from Google's solution was how the codes were stored on your device. Since they were encrypted using a key that's specific to that particular phone, you couldn't access the codes anywhere else.
A new Undo button might be available on the beta channel soon
Gboard has a massive user base since it comes pre-installed on most Android phones — but even if this weren't the case, Google's virtual keyboard would still be a popular choice for its easy typing and useful features. Despite a plethora of treasures tucked away in the mustiest corners of its settings menu, Gboard has long ignored a much-needed feature: an undo button. This could soon change, as Google has been spotted developing a new feature in the app that will magically reverse those accidental taps.
We need one AI to rule them all
Enterprises everywhere are rushing to explore the possibilities of AI, working hard to bring about the promised paradigm shift we've all been hearing hyped so much. Google's been no exception, and the company has been hoarding AI/ML engineers like Pokémon — hiring talent with scant intention to ship products that would compete with its core search engine model.
Google's transition from semi-custom Samsung to fully-custom TSMC for its Tensor chip pushed to 2025
Google's ambitious journey into the world of custom chip design, initiated with the Tensor G1 SoC in the Pixel 6 series, appears to be approaching a significant turning point. Although Google has depended heavily on Samsung for chip design and production since the introduction of the Tensor, this reliance is set to shift as the tech giant is planning to debut a fully customized Tensor chip by 2025 and has selected Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) as the new production partner.
The recent Google Photos update introduces a range of video effects
Google Photos, which could be considered the Swiss Army knife of gallery apps, is always getting better with each update. For example, recently Photos received a convenient import function. Now, the developers have added video effects and fine-tuned media controls, transforming the app into an even more comprehensive tool for Android users.
Rate limits and new login requirements are having ripple effects across the internet
Lately, Google has been trying to get better about incorporating social media posts into your search results, launching a new Perspectives tab right around the same time Reddit's blackouts started. Meanwhile, Twitter has changed its platform in ways that may be affecting the appearance of tweets in search results. CEO Elon Musk announced the controversial decision to impose temporary rate limits just days after the company made most of its content solely available to registered users, and now we're seeing a lot of Twitter results disappear from Google Search.
But only for RCS chats
Google updated the Messages app last year with an inline reply feature for responding directly to a specific message in a conversation. However, it requires users to have RCS enabled as part of Google's effort to convince carriers and developers to make RCS the standard messaging method despite existing compatibility issues with iOS devices. Direct reply is perhaps one of the most useful features to arrive on Google Messages' Android app in recent times, and it has finally landed on the web.
The company is joining Meta in its protest against Bill C-18 and will stop linking to Canadian news in Canada
Google has vowed to remove links to Canadian news publishers across its platforms for users residing in the country, affecting Google News, Search, and Discover. The company says it took this decision following the passing of Canada’s Bill C-18, which imposes a ‘link tax’ on Google and Meta for all links to Canadian news publications.
Google is beta testing image search functionality in its Fact Check Explorer
In this age of misinformation, how is anyone supposed to know what to trust online? Even if the image you're looking at hasn't been altered in Photoshop, it can still be hard to find out where a picture originated, what context is needed to understand it, or to tell if it's candid or staged. Since it's incredibly easy to take any image and make false statements about it online, Google is introducing an upgrade to its Fact Check Explorer that adds image search.
Google delivers a stunning tribute to 50 years of hip hop with its exclusive Pixel Fold
Google has added its name to the list of contenders in the race to build the finest foldable smartphone. The tech giant's foldable flagship, the Pixel Fold, is setting its sights high, aiming to take on established brands such as Samsung. Google candidly admits that it canceled its first Pixel Fold for not meeting its standards for quality. Today, that commitment to making something truly good is manifesting in a bold and unique manner, as Google is not only competing in the foldable market but also bridging the gap between technology and culture.