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First images of Android M’s new photos app surface

First images of Android M’s new photos app surface

There have been rumblings for some time now of Google spinning off the photos features of Google+ into a separate app, and now, with the company's I/O 2015 event only days away, some of the first images of the Android version have been leaked. The timing can't be a coincidence. Google is expected to announce Android M, the code name for the latest version of the mobile OS, and a new photos app could play a big part in the new software offerings.

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Google+ Photos spinoff tipped to be ready for I/O 2015

Google+ Photos spinoff tipped to be ready for I/O 2015

No matter how you look at it, no matter how Google wants to spin it, things aren't looking good for Google+. The tech giant's attempt to take a bite out of Facebook is slowly but surely getting dismantled, with the Photos part now said to be ready to break out on its own as early as late May, in time for Google's annual developers conference. Officially, it's a way for the social platform to slim down and focus on what it does best. Unofficially, it is also a sign of a lack of vision, direction, and confidence.

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Google Plus ‘Collections’ now rolling out to users

Google Plus ‘Collections’ now rolling out to users

Whether or not Google is dismantling Google+, reorganizing it, or just thinking differently about social is unknown. Through signs that the social layer of Google is at least being demoted through the ranks, the service has nonetheless added a new feature that pinches a bit of cool from another social service that might be more widely used. With Collections, you’ll be able to take things of interest and organize them into lists, which can in turn be shared to the public, or a more private audience.

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Google Plus is now on Twitter (don’t panic)

Google Plus is now on Twitter (don’t panic)

So, uh, this is awkward. That social service you don’t really use is on the one you probably do. Today, Google Plus opened a Twitter account. You might assume (as many did) it's a troll account, but it’s not. The official Google account has retweeted their first tweet, and the Google Plus Google Plus account posted a link to their new Twitter account. It’s got people wondering what’s going on, but it’s pretty simple: they’re recruiting. In an attempt to get more traction in the social space, Plus is taking to Twitter to spread the word.

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What you need to know about Google Drive’s ‘Photos’ backup

What you need to know about Google Drive’s ‘Photos’ backup

Not long ago, Google blogged that Drive would now serve as an automatic backup point for your photos. While the announcement was welcome, the service wasn’t quite ready for primetime, leaving the new ‘Google Photos’ tab in Drive dormant. Users are starting to see auto backup pop up for both Android and iOS, but there are some interesting wrinkles some may not have considered. Rather than let you figure it out on your own (and maybe delete pics accidentally), we’ll go over what’s what with Drive’s automatic backup.

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Google+ is being dismantled, and that’s a good thing

Google+ is being dismantled, and that’s a good thing

In a recent chat with Forbes, Google’s Sundar Pichai turned a few heads by noting Google+ would be considered as parts — not the sum of those parts. Rather than a social network, Plus would be a stream. And Photos. And Communications. Adding a bit of fuel to the fire was the subsequent dismissal/resignation of Dave Besbris as the head of Google+. Besbris took over for Vic Gundotra, who spearheaded Plus from inception. With a new boss in Bradley Horowitz, the circumstance around Plus might sound confusing. That’s because they kind of are.

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New Google+ boss confirms Photos, Streams split

New Google+ boss confirms Photos, Streams split

Google really has some trouble putting Google+ in its proper place, or at least helping the public understand what it's all about. The much maligned social network, if you still could call it that, has weathered problem after problem but now it seems that the status quo isn't going to last anymore. Brad Horowitz, who will be standing at the helm of Google+, has just confirmed speculation that the service will soon be split up into a more photo-centric product called Photos and the traditional social feed called Streams.

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Google may have foodie social site named ‘Tablescape’ in the works

Google may have foodie social site named ‘Tablescape’ in the works

It’s either a brilliant idea, or a really misguided attempt at social — it’s hard to say right now. According to a new report, Google is once again making an attempt at social, and is focussing on hitting us where it matters. Tablescape is a new project by Google, and is taking a social look at food. Rather than a wide open forum as most social sites are, Tablescape would be entirely focussed on food, and people who photograph their food.

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Google buys offline photo-sharing app Odysee

Google buys offline photo-sharing app Odysee

Detractors of Google’s social layer, Google+, can agree that its one redeeming quality is photo storage and sharing, where Google has done an incredibly good job of making sure your media looks good, and is easily accessible. To that point, Google has acquired Odysee, an iOS and Android app that has some interesting features for private photo sharing. The team at Odysee, in announcing the acquisition, also say they’re joining the Google+ team.

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Google+ for iOS brings new sharing option, HD

Google+ for iOS brings new sharing option, HD

Google’s own social network, Google+, has been updated for iOS users. The new-look social app brings in a higher resolution to better support the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, as well as some updated (and much needed) sharing options. The sharing is interesting because it adapts a very Android-y feature found in iOS 8, giving you the ability to add Google+ to your sharing options. Google+ users on iOS will also get the ability to vote on polls.

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