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Amazon Echo has a head start when it comes to the skills and software support needed to control the rest of your smart home gadgets, but Google's competing voice-controlled speaker is quickly catching up. A recent update to the Google Home support site reveals how the gadget is set to make it even easier to control your other connected devices and appliances around the house.
Back in the 1990s, one company pretty much dominated mobile computing. That company was Palm. But, by the end of the last millennium, Microsoft decided that mobile computing was a big deal and they sunk a bunch of effort in developing Windows CE, then Pocket PC and eventually, Windows Mobile. Palm disappeared and Microsoft ruled the roost for a while. But then Apple released the iPhone, Google released Android and Microsoft found themselves dumped from leadership to being an also-ran in very short time. And after trying to reassert themselves, Microsoft has finally given up on Windows Phone. Which is a shame.
Fire up an iPhone X alongside a Galaxy Note 8 and you might not think there's all that much to choose between Android and iOS any more. They offer the same apps, in the same sorts of grids, with similar approaches to notifications and quick settings, and at this stage in the game you're probably happy with your choice of mobile OS and sticking with it.
Is there really any reason to switch? Well, yeah - there's still a few!
If you're a frequent user of Google's Image search, then you probably noticed that the company recently removed the 'View Image" button from search results.
Two-step verification is great. However, if you happen to lose your phone and don't have a few backup codes on you then it can make finding your device on the fly a bit complicated. You can score backup codes whether you use SMS or an Authenticator app for verification (you should really be using an Authenticator app), and carrying them with you can help get you out of a bind if your phone ends up MIA.
Google killed the View Image button recently and while it's easy enough to work around, it'd be even better if there was a way to restore it. Hang on... isn't that what browser extensions and addons are for?
Yesterday, Google made a few changes to the way Image Search works, the biggest tweak being the removal of the "View Image" button they would take you straight to the image's URL. Now, all you'll see is "Visit", which navigates to the page on which the image appears. So, why did Google do this? A legal settlement with Getty Images basically.
It has happened to all of us. You visit a retail website to check out some product (like a pair of shoes or a new video game) and before you know it that same product is following you everywhere you go online, tempting you to buy it. Thankfully, there's a "trick" to make those ads a little less annoying.
For the past year, Google has been pumping out lightweight versions of its most popular apps designed specifically for low-cost smartphones. Under the Android Go banner, we've already seen YouTube Go, Google Maps Go, and even a brand new service called Files Go meant to clear up storage space on your device. Now Google is rolling out its latest lightweight app: Assistant Go.
Google has released more messaging apps than I can remember (Allo, Android Messages, Messenger, Hangouts, Gchat, the list goes on), but the company has never been able to come up with a single service that can easily handle your messages on all platforms the way iMessage does for iOS and Mac devices. Now, Google may have finally figured it out by copying one of Apple's best features: Desktop SMS messaging.
If you've been hitting VLC's nightly builds, then most of the new features of v3.0.0 will be old news. For everyone else, the major update -- the first since 2.0.0 came out in 2012 -- adds loads of goodness, including native Chromecast support, hardware HEVC decoding and advanced network browsing. While VLC's website hasn't been updated, there's no need to wait: you can grab the official release right now.
Microsoft and Google are running their main developer events at the same time this year, forcing developers to choose between the two events. While many businesses prefer a multi-cloud solution so they aren't locked in to a single provider, developers will have decide which platform will carry their conference attention in 2018.
I love starting every morning with a daily briefing from my Google Home speaker (just say "Hey, Google good morning" and you'll get the weather, news and any events on your calendar), but using it as an alarm clock is another story. That's because Google's never made it easy to wake up to music instead of a wailing siren - until now.
Now that Amazon's Echo has been launched locally, we have a full set of premium speakers that can be used as home assistants that can listen to our commands and pander to our beck and call. So, how does it stack up against Google's Home and the Apple HomePod, which hits the stores tomorrow? Let's take a look.