Google IO

ARCore grows while Daydream VR is MIA at Google I/O 2019

ARCore grows while Daydream VR is MIA at Google I/O 2019

Google is known for cooking up many interesting experiments and investing in them as far as making them available to consumers. It is, however, also known for sometimes flip-flopping on those and abandoning them with very little warning. Nowhere is that more evident than Google's augmented and virtual reality thrusts, which has undergone some significant changes over the years. At I/O 2019, Google reaffirms its commitment to its ARCore platform will keeping ominously silent on Daydream VR.

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I/O 2019 Takeaways: Google is no longer after your data (sort of)

I/O 2019 Takeaways: Google is no longer after your data (sort of)

Facebook, and more recently Amazon, may be at the center of most privacy-related reports these days but there was a time not too long ago when it was Google who was always on the hot seat. Reports, regulations, and sanctions have made Google change much of its processes, at least the public ones, and is slowly turning its image around. At I/O 2019, the pervading theme, more than AI and technology, is privacy. It's not that Google is no longer interested in your data. It's just making it a lot easier for users to opt out. If they remember or know how to, that is.

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Android Q Beta 3: what’s coming on which phones

Android Q Beta 3: what’s coming on which phones

It may be a seldom-used letter but Android Q belies the importance of the release. More than just the tenth (public) version of the biggest mobile platform in the world, Android Q is piling up the improvements and new features across the board. Some may find them groundbreaking while others have already yawned at what has been revealed. We have already talked about its focus on privacy and 5G so here are the other highlights in the third beta that will be available for testing on as much as 21 phones.

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Duplex on the Web lets you make car and hotel reservations in Chrome

Duplex on the Web lets you make car and hotel reservations in Chrome

Google's Duplex AI is awesome in both meanings of the word. Its ability to hold a phone conversation to reserve you a seat in a restaurant is somewhat unnerving but also the stuff of the future. Not everyone, however, needs to book a table all of the time and now Google is preparing to expand Duplex to do more. All it needs is a little help from Chrome on Android to reserve cars or even make purchases.

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Chrome OS at Google I/O puts the focus on Android app development

Chrome OS at Google I/O puts the focus on Android app development

Gone are the days when Chrome OS felt simply like a glorified web browser limited to Google's apps and services. Google says it designed the platform around speed, simplicity, and security but, to be honest, only two of those probably still hold. Chrome OS has grown up to be quite the complicated beast and now Google is revealing what it was all for: Web and Android app development.

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Nest Hub Max: Hands-on with this camera-clad display

Nest Hub Max: Hands-on with this camera-clad display

Google revealed the Next Home Hub today, and with it, they re-shuffled their branding for smart home products. Now we've got a bigger Nest Hub Max (with 10-inch screen) and the smaller Nest Hub. This larger device is akin to a device released before, by Google, albeit without the camera.

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Google Nest consolidates smart home products under single brand

Google Nest consolidates smart home products under single brand

Google brought Nest back into the fold last year, and now it has announced that the smart home brand is being rebranded as Google Nest. The decision was announced during the Google I/O 2019 keynote today, marking the latest change for Nest. Before being absorbed into Google, Nest existed as a separate company under Alphabet. The rebrand joins Google's announcement that its Home products are being moved under the Nest brand.

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Google’s Project Euphonia uses AI to boost impaired speech recognition

Google’s Project Euphonia uses AI to boost impaired speech recognition

Google has demonstrated Project Euphonia, an effort under its AI for Social Good program that utilizes artificial intelligence to improve speech recognition technology. Google partnered with the ALS Residence Initiative and ALS Therapy Development Institute non-profit organizations to improve its technology using voice recordings of people who have the neuro-degenerative condition ALS.

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Google Nest Home Hub 10″ smart display adds camera: Pricing and release

Google Nest Home Hub 10″ smart display adds camera: Pricing and release

Google has a new smart display, the Nest Hub Max, a bigger, camera-enabled sibling to the renamed Google Home Hub, which is now the Nest Hub. The new Nest Hub Max has a 10-inch touchscreen now, focused on multi-user households, as well as the option of face recognition so that individual people see the information that's most relevant to them.

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Android Q will get 5G network health data from Qualcomm’s chips

Android Q will get 5G network health data from Qualcomm’s chips

Android Q 5G phones will be able to share more network data with apps, as Qualcomm and Google announce plans to maximize the usefulness of next-generation networks. Announced at Google I/O 2019 today, the collaboration will see Android developers gain improved APIs with more insight into the cellular network the phone is connected to.

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Android Focus Mode lets you tune out distracting apps

Android Focus Mode lets you tune out distracting apps

Smartphones can be great tools for productivity, staying in touch, or even killing time, but they can also be a major distraction. If you're the type of person who finds it difficult to stay focused on other tasks when your smartphone is buzzing with notification after notification, then you'll probably be very pleased to hear about a new feature heading to Android. It's called Focus Mode, and it does pretty much what that name suggests.

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Android Q pushes privacy: New app location controls, easier security updates

Android Q pushes privacy: New app location controls, easier security updates

Privacy is moving to the fore in Android Q, part of Google's big push to reassure wary users that their devices and services aren't eavesdropping on them or sharing their personal data. The topic was a repeating theme at the opening Google I/O 2019 keynote, reflecting the greater attention tech behemoths and their attitude to privacy has had among both users and regulators.

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