google now

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    Google Now on iOS is neither Google nor Now

    By now you’ve probably heard that Google has brought Google Now, its virtual assistant, to iOS. And it’s true — Google has brought Google Now’s most-obvious feature, the information-packed Cards that tell users about the weather, traffic, flight information, and a whole slew of other categories, to the iPhone and iPad. But this isn’t the Google Now that’s been shipping on Android devices for the last year. It’s a less-functional imitation of itself that, despite all that it…
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    Sherpa takes on Google Now and other personal assistants. Here’s what’s different

    Here’s yet another personal assistant app in a space that is becoming fast crowded — and where others have died before. Empowered by the idea that mobile will make everything different, there are some notables: Google Now, Tempo, Grokr, and of course Siri. Add one more to the mix: Sherpa, an iOS app that launch today in closed beta. It also announced $1.1 million in funding from Andreessen Horowitz, Google Ventures, InterWest Partners, and angels. It’s…
  • ET touch screen

    My 3-year-old nephew gets the Chromebook Pixel, why don’t you?

    There’s nothing quite like wiping smudges from a laptop display, especially when their origin can be traced back to your 3-year-old nephew’s drool-and-god-knows-what-else covered fingers. They don’t teach you how to explain the difference between a laptop’s screen and a smartphone or tablet’s touch-screen at press events, and a toddler doesn’t give a damn — sorry, darn — about what Steve Jobs said about “gorilla arm” and the problem with vertical touch-screens. That’s what I thought about when Google…
  • ben franklin google glass

    Glass is one step closer to a more human Google

    “Welcome to a world through Glass.” That’s the lead copy on the newly-launched Google Glass — now just Glass, apparently — website, which offers the first glimpse at what Glass may look like in the real world. The accompanying video doesn’t sport a ukulele, a rooftop ballad, or a trip through a bookstore, but it does show how the average person will use Glass in their everyday lives. The new video isn’t about impressing a room…
  • Google Glass

    What will news look like on Google Glass?

    Today, Google bestowed on the world another slickly made advertisement for Google Glass, giving us a better idea of what the wearable computer will look like, and how it will behave, from the user’s perspective. The ad shows people using voice commands to record video, take photos, send messages, conduct video calls, follow directions, access flight information, get weather updates, get translations, find images, and make out with a snake, all projected into a space no larger than a spectacle…

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    Tempo’s smart calendar is a more focused Google Now

    Raj Singh leads me to the door of a dark room and gestures for me to go inside. It’s a large open area with a floating catwalk that leads to the center of the room, with foamy spikes jutting out from every inch of the floors and wall. It looks like a cross between Cerebro from X-Men and the meeting chamber of the Galactic Senate in Star Wars. (Two geeky references in one sentence. And they said it couldn’t be done.)…
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    Oh, Winston? Read me the news, today’s weather forecast, and my friend’s status updates

    Let’s go ahead and get all of the robot clichés out of the way before we begin: “Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto!” I, Robot. HAL 9000. Skynet. Terminator. Cortana. C3P0. R2D2. “These are not the droids you’re looking for.” And so on and so forth. Now we can talk about Winston, a robotic personal assistant launching today to will read you your daily news, updates from Twitter and Facebook, and tomorrow’s weather. Winston, which is backed by ENIAC Ventures and Comcast…
  • frankensiri

    Killing the Siri-Verizon deal helped Android, not iOS

    Asking Siri about “her” past won’t get you much more than a blank screen and an “I don’t like to talk about myself,” implying either a strong sense of humility or a robotic facade meant to keep a sordid past from the public. As the Huffington Post reveals in its “SIRI RISING” story, it’s likely the latter — Siri has had a storied history, from its beginning as a research project at the Defense Department to a deal with…
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    Apple is the ghost of technology’s present, Google is its future

    You’d think no one had ever heard of “A Christmas Carol,” what with all the talk of Apple’s specter leaving a shadow over CES and the technology industry. Dickens’ story about character and reform is meant to teach many things, but perhaps the greatest lesson is that nothing is ever haunted by one ghost. The past, the present, and the future each have their own unique apparition, and Apple is merely the ghost of technology’s present. Google, one might…
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    A layman’s review of the Nexus 4 – and how it compares to the iPhone

    I’m a an Apple fan. I’ve got the third iPad, the new iMac, a Macbook Air, an older Macbook, and two years ago I didn’t consider buying anything other than the iPhone. Still, when it came time to choosing a phone, this time I decided to give the Nexus 4 a try. I’ve now been using the Nexus 4 for a couple of weeks, and I love it. That was something of a surprise. I thought by switching from iPhone…

  • google_inside

    Google partners with Scoutmob for location-based deals – just in case Foursquare needed even more competition

    Six years ago, when I was covering the digital marketing industry in Asia, there was a lot of wonder and awe about promotions that could be enabled by Bluetooth for mobile users. If you happened to have Bluetooth activated on your Nokia N93, or whatever juiced-up feature phone was the order of the day, and you happened to get close enough to an object or store that was running a Bluetooth-enabled campaign, you could unlock special deals or discounts. That…

  • CityCar_stacks

    Apps aside, has the tech industry ever been more exciting?

    It’s been almost two years since Cloudera founder and former Facebook research scientist Jeff Hammerbacher lamented to Businessweek that “The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads.” Given that Facebook, Apple, Google, Microsoft, and the word “app” dominated our attention spans in 2012, he likely doesn’t think much differently today. Nor is it likely that Peter Thiel would feel the need to update his gripe that, “We wanted flying cars,…

  • App consolidation

    The new answer to app overload: fewer apps

    When Hurricane Sandy forced Google to cancel its big event to show off its new Nexus smartphone and tablets, it also blew away a chance for the company to build hype for the latest version of a new product that will bring to an end to the problem of “app overload.” Instead, Google’s groundbreaking new product has been changing the mobile experience quietly but surely. So, few people have pointed out that it has the potential to significantly reduce…

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    Grokr, which may know you better than you know yourself, will launch Dec. 11

    It’s coming, and you didn’t even know you were looking for it. Grokr, that is. How apt, considering that’s the notion the company is banking on to become a hit with users. The startup is finally about to officially release its core product, which the company has been working on for two years, and recently been beta testing. The company, founded by Srivats Sampath — who also founded McAfee.com — claims to intuitively deliver you the information you care about before…
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    Google I/O Day One Wrap-Up: Software Edition

    Following our earlier coverage of the hardware announcements at Google’s I/O event, this post is a wrap-up of the big software features and products that Google unveiled on stage today. Not only has Google committed to fixing some problems that have been a part of the Android “experience” since the first version of the mobile operating system shipped (unresponsiveness), it also moved to help developers work with the platform and made a commitment to becoming a genuine content company.

The Week in Review