Google I/O came with a handful of important announcements related Google and its services. It’s not just about the smartwatches running on Android Wear, or the upcoming Android L release, Google also launched Drive for Work, which give businesses some exciting new features, as well as improved security.
As Google polishes its next (and possibly final) Nexus tablet effort, the developer-focused I/O conference is nearing. And Big G must showcase some exciting new hardware on June 25 and 26. The N9 is but a faint possibility, and so is the N6, while a third-gen N7 or second-gen N10 are even bigger stretches.
With the demise of the highly successful but maybe not extremely profitable Nexus line nigh, it’s only fitting to expect HTC be asked back in the program. The fun all started with the Taiwan-based device manufacturer four years ago, so them bringing an end to Nexus as we know it would be symbolic. Almost poetic.
EU antitrust authorities have looked into practically all international technology companies at one point or another, and it appears that Google is up once again for an inspection. GigaOm has revealed that at the same time as the EU is looking into the Google Search business, it may also examine the Android app store business. A complaint is reportedly being filed against Google by Aptoide, an app store for Android that runs as an alternative to Google Play. From Aptoide’s perspective, Google is engaging in anti-competitive behavior by dominating the Android app market.
Google is diving even further into the business of satellites with its latest acquisition of Skybox Imaging. Google has purchased the satellite imagery company for $500 million and while it will initially use the acquired technologies for projects like Google Earth, Google has already stated that its use for the satellites extends to internet expansion projects. When it was first reported that Google was considering an acquisition of Skybox, many pointed out that the satellites would be perfect for Google Loon and it turns out that they were correct.
As Google’s often glitzy I/O developer-focused conference is nearing its seventh annual installment, you’d expect rumors concerning possible product announcements to be blowing up right about now.
China’s state media has initiated an all-out campaign against Apple, Google, and Facebook which it considers “pawns” of the US government in regards to their potential involvement in the NSA’s mass surveillance. The involvement that the Chinese media is referring to was first brought up nearly a year ago when PRISM was first uncovered, so it is not clear why the Chinese media is now calling for the companies to be punished and for new regulations to be put in place.
Support for Aereo on Chromecast has just been added, allowing people to stream content from their Android device to an HDMI-enabled display. Aereo has been available on Android smartphones and tablets since 2013 and this upgrade will let people watch the service’s TV content on a larger screen. Aereo is still very new and as you may recall, it has run into major legal disputes with broadcasters who say that the service owes them money for re-broadcasting content.
Google and others in the web community are not happy about the European Union’s “right to be forgotten” ruling but since it has been accepted, Google is being forced to comply with it. For the time being–Google may fight back against the rule–the search giant has implemented a webform for people in the EU who are trying to be forgotten. The webform will be used to create requests that Google will then review and either accept or deny.
Google co-founder Sergey Brin told an audience at Re/code’s Code Conference that since he is “kind of a weirdo”, his involvement with a social network like Google Plus should have been limited and now, he is not working on social projects like that one. Brin says working on the company’s social network was “probably a mistake” and although he does use the network, he is generally not a social person.
Google’s crowd-pleasing Nexus project may well end soon, but speculation is piling up in support of a majestic swan song. Does “Flounder” ring a bell? A sketchy report pegged it as the internal codename of a forthcoming Nexus 8 not long ago, and now the hearsay is gaining credence.
YouTube will be coming out with new tools for creators in the coming months, according to a post on the official Partners and Creators blog. In its first “Creator Preview” video, Google employees working on the creator-side of YouTube announced that a new mobile app for managing videos would be coming out as well as a crowdfunding feature. Both of those things sound great and should improve the platform for active YouTube creators.