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Google+ Communities turns social upstart into discussion hub

Google+ Communities turns social upstart into discussion hub

Google has revealed its answer to Facebook Groups, Google+ Communities, a way for like-minded souls to create hubs of discussion and media on any topic they're interested in. Hitting all Google+ accounts today, Communities works as a topic-specific discussion board, with support for various sub-topics branching off from that, and with a choice of privacy settings to control whether anybody can participate, or if it's locked down.

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Google Play reviews now use Google+ name and photo

Google Play reviews now use Google+ name and photo

Google really wants all of the content users of its various services upload and create to use their real name and offer their photograph. Not too long ago Google updated YouTube giving people who upload videos the opportunity to use their Google+ name and profile photo rather than whatever random name they chose when they register for YouTube. Google is now rolling out that more personalized name and photo service to Google Play.

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Google Drive introduces direct sharing (and embedding) to Google+

Google Drive introduces direct sharing (and embedding) to Google+

It's time to get serious once again about cross-use between Google services right here with Google Drive and the company's social network Google+ - from one to the other! The announcement today is that the media you upload to your Google Drive account from whatever source you've got - be it your smartphone, your tablet, your Chromebook, or your desktop computer - can now be viewed from Google+ and shared directly as well! Google is making the case once again that it simply makes more sense - ie is easier - to use all Google all the time.

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SlashGear Evening Wrap-Up: October 4, 2012

SlashGear Evening Wrap-Up: October 4, 2012

Welcome to Thursday evening everyone - just one more work day to go and then we'll have arrived at the weekend. Today we received a pair of invites from Microsoft - one for a Windows 8 launch event happening on October 25, and another for a Windows Phone 8 event happening on October 29. We also learned today that Samsung intends to update the Galaxy S III to Jelly Bean "soon," but sadly, we still don't have a specific date to speak of. We were also told today that HP will be hiring more than 50 developers to work on Open webOS, which is definitely something to get excited about.

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Could Google+ Eat Evernote?

Could Google+ Eat Evernote?

Information is pointless if you can't find it when you need it. That's the ethos that has driven search engines like Google just as it has "digital notebook" services like Evernote, and it's also the reason why Google+ could eat Evernote's lunch if it put its mind to it. With the news of Facebook's one billion active users, questions as to how Google+ will compete with Zuckerberg's empire have inevitably surfaced; of course, the best way to stay relevant is to offer something completely different altogether.

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Motorola Mobility announces Viewdle acquisition

Motorola Mobility announces Viewdle acquisition

Well, look at that. Yesterday, we caught wind of a rumored Google buyout of Viewdle, a company that specializes in facial recognition technology. The whispers yesterday said that this acquisition could be announced by the end of the week, possibly as soon as today. Sure enough, Motorola announced its acquisition of Viewdle today, sealing the deal and boosting Google's portfolio when it comes to facial recognition.

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Google close to striking buyout deal with facial recognition company Viewdle

Google close to striking buyout deal with facial recognition company Viewdle

Facial recognition seems to be all the rage these (depending on who you ask, at least), and now it seems that Google wants a slice of that pie. CNET is reporting that the big G has almost closed on a deal to buy facial recognition firm Viewdle, and that the buyout could close sometime this week. Google has reportedly been working for a year to purchase Viewdle, and if that's true, then its clear that Google really wants to add Viewdle's facial recognition technology to its portfolio.

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