Since we released the first version of Google Wallet, the app that makes your phone your wallet, we’ve made it available on six phones from Sprint and Virgin Mobile, as well as the new Nexus 7 tablet. We’ve also partnered with more than 25 national retailers, and thanks to MasterCard PayPass, you can pay with your phone at more than 200,000 retail locations across the U.S.
Today we’re releasing a new, cloud-based version of the Google Wallet app that supports all credit and debit cards from Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. Now, you can use any card when you shop in-store or online with Google Wallet. With the new version, you can also remotely disable your mobile wallet app from your Google Wallet account on the web.
A wallet with all your credit and debit cards
To save a card to Google Wallet, just enter the number into the mobile app, online wallet, or Google Play when making purchases. When you shop in-store, you can use Google Wallet in conjunction with your selected credit or debit card for purchases (more info here). Shortly after making a payment, you’ll see a transaction record on the phone with the merchant name and dollar amount. You can now view a history of all your in-store and online purchases from the online wallet.
Unlike searching on a desktop or laptop computer, when you're searching on a touch-screen mobile device it’s often inconvenient to type. So we strive to give you a variety of ways to interact with Google, be it by speaking your queries, getting results before you finish typing, or searching by image. Now there’s a new way for you to interact with Google: Handwrite for web search on mobile phones and tablets.
Say you’re standing on a busy street corner, in a bumpy taxi ride, talking with a friend, or sitting on the couch with your tablet. Handwrite enables you to search by just writing letters with your finger most anywhere on your device’s screen—there’s no keyboard that covers half of the screen and no need for hunt-and-peck typing.
Getting started is easy: go to Google.com in your mobile browser, tap on “Settings” at the bottom of the screen and enable “Handwrite.” Note that after you've saved the setting, you may need to refresh the homepage to see the feature.
The rollout of Android 4.1, Jelly Bean, begins today, starting with Galaxy Nexus HSPA+ devices.
Jelly Bean makes everything feel fast, fluid, and smooth. Notifications are expandable and actionable, widgets are magical and the keyboard is smarter and more accurate: http://www.android.com/whatsnew/
Jelly Bean also features a redesigned search experience, with a new user interface and faster Voice Search. You can type your query or simply ask Google a question. Google can speak back to you, delivering a precise answer if it knows one, in addition to a list of search results.
Google Inc. announced today that the acquisition of Motorola Mobility Holdings, Inc. has closed, with Google acquiring MMI for $40.00 per share in cash.
The acquisition will enable Google to supercharge the Android ecosystem and will enhance competition in mobile computing. Motorola Mobility will remain a licensee of Android and Android will remain open. Google will run Motorola Mobility as a separate business.
Sanjay Jha, who revived Motorola’s Mobile Devices business and led the company through this acquisition, has stepped down as CEO, although he will continue to work with Google to help ensure a smooth transition.
Dennis Woodside, who has overseen integration planning for the acquisition and previously served as President of Google’s Americas region, has become CEO of Motorola Mobility.
Larry Page, CEO of Google, said, “I’m happy to announce the deal has closed. Motorola is a great American tech company, with a track record of over 80 years of innovation. It’s a great time to be in the mobile business, and I’m confident that the team at Motorola will be creating the next generation of mobile devices that will improve lives for years to come.
“Sanjay Jha, who was responsible for building the company and placing a big bet on Android, has stepped down as CEO. I would like to thank him for his efforts and am tremendously pleased that he will be working to ensure a smooth transition as long-time Googler Dennis Woodside takes over as CEO of Motorola Mobility.
Google has announced that Chrome for Android Beta is now available in 31 more languages and in all countries where Google Play is available. Google has also added many much-requested features, including:
You can now request the desktop version of a website, in case you would rather not view the mobile version.
You can now add bookmarks as shortcuts on your home screen, so you can get to your favorite sites faster.
Choose your favorite apps to handle links opened in Chrome.
Have a proxy setup for Wi-Fi access? You can now use Chrome with the system proxy configured in Android settings.
If you build websites, you may want to take note of a change in the User-Agent specification for Chrome for Android.
A team within Google[x] group has started Project Glass to build technology that helps you explore and share your world via wearable computers. (See video above). Visit http://g.co/projectglass for more information.
Since Google Voice was launched in 2009, Google has supported visual voicemail so you could open the Google Voice app, see all your voicemails with text transcripts, and play them on-demand. However, sometimes when you get a missed call, you don’t want to jump between my call log and the Google Voice app to see who has called me and what message they left.
So, today, Google is updating their mobile app so you can view and listen to your voicemails on demand directly from the call log on your Android phone. Your voicemails will appear alongside your outgoing, incoming, and missed calls in your phone’s call log and you can just simply touch them to play them. You can slow down the playback of the message which is great for when someone is telling you their callback number, or you even speed playback up, so you can quickly listen to longer messages.
To turn this feature on, download the latest app from Google Play and check “Voicemail display” under settings. This new feature requires Android 4.0+.
Google today announced they are rebranding Android Market to Google Play, a digital entertainment destination where you can find, enjoy and share your favorite music, movies, books and apps on the web and on your Android phone or tablet. Google Play is entirely cloud-based so all your music, movies, books and apps are stored online, always available to you, and you never have to worry about losing them or moving them again. (See video above.)
With Google Play you can:
Store up to 20,000 songs for free and buy millions of new tracks
Download more than 450,000 Android apps and games
Browse the world’s largest selection of eBooks
Rent thousands of your favorite movies, including new releases and HD titles
Google today is releasing a new update to the Google Docs app for Android. Google has brought the collaborative experience from Google Docs on the desktop to your Android device. You'll see updates in real time as others type on their computers, tablets and phones, and you can just tap the document to join in.
Google has also updated the interface to make it easier to work with your documents on the go. For example, you can pinch to zoom and focus on a specific paragraph or see the whole document at a glance. Google also added rich text formatting so you can do things like create a quick bullet list, add color to your documents, or just bold something important. Watch the video above of the new Google Docs app in action.
The Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division issued the following statement today after announcing the closing of its investigations into Google Inc.’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc., the acquisitions by Apple Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Research in Motion Ltd. (RIM) of certain Nortel Networks Corporation patents, and the acquisition by Apple of certain Novell Inc. patents:
“After a thorough review of the proposed transactions, the Antitrust Division has determined that each acquisition is unlikely to substantially lessen competition and has closed these three investigations. In all of the transactions, the division conducted an in-depth analysis into the potential ability and incentives of the acquiring firms to use the patents they proposed acquiring to foreclose competitors. In particular, the division focused on standard essential patents (SEPs) that Motorola Mobility and Nortel had committed to license to industry participants through their participation in standard-setting organizations (SSOs). The division’s investigations focused on whether the acquiring firms could use these patents to raise rivals’ costs or foreclose competition.
“The division concluded that the specific transactions at issue are not likely to significantly change existing market dynamics.
"As we announced last November, Adobe is no longer developing Flash Player for mobile browsers, and thus Chrome for Android Beta does not support Flash content. Flash Player continues to be supported within the current Android browser.
Adobe is committed to innovating with Flash. We’ll continue enabling content developers to produce rich and immersive applications on mobile devices and PCs via Adobe AIR, and through PC browsers via Flash Player. Flash is uniquely positioned for creating and publishing advanced gaming and premium video content, and that is where we’re focusing our future investment. We recently released hardware accelerated support for 2D and 3D graphics for Flash Player on the desktop and will soon bring these same capabilities to mobile apps via AIR. Together with recent advancements in hardware accelerated video decoding, compositing and content protection, these capabilities provide the richest platform for game developers and video publishers to reach over a billion users across PCs and major mobile app stores, including the iTunes App Store and Android Market.
At the same time, we’re actively working to move HTML5 forward via our ongoing collaboration with Google and other members of the Web community. Adobe’s proposal for CSS Regions, which allows sophisticated, magazine-like page layouts on the web, is now shipping in the Chrome browser. We’re collaborating with Google and other members of the Web community on a proposal for CSS Shaders to enable cinematic, visual effects via HTML5 and we’re exploring the potential of its Shadow DOM proposal, which would enable the integration of rich user interface components in web pages.
Google today introduced Chrome for Android Beta. Like the desktop version, Chrome for Android Beta is focused on speed and simplicity, but it also features seamless sign-in and sync so you can take your personalized web browsing experience with you wherever you go, across devices. (See video above).
Speed With Chrome for Android, you can search, navigate and browse fast—Chrome fast. You can scroll through web pages as quickly as you can flick your finger. When searching, your top search results are loaded in the background as you type so pages appear instantly. And of course, both search and navigation can all be done quickly from the Chrome omnibox.
Simplicity Chrome for Android is designed from the ground up for mobile devices. We reimagined tabs so they fit just as naturally on a small-screen phone as they do on a larger screen tablet. You can flip or swipe between an unlimited number of tabs using intuitive gestures, as if you’re holding a deck of cards in the palm of your hands, each one a new window to the web. One of the biggest pains of mobile browsing is selecting the correct link out of several on a small-screen device.
Google today revealed a service they have developed, codenamed Bouncer, which provides automated scanning of Android Market for potentially malicious software without disrupting the user experience of Android Market or requiring developers to go through an application approval process.
The service performs a set of analyses on new applications, applications already in Android Market, and developer accounts. Here’s how it works: once an application is uploaded, the service immediately starts analyzing it for known malware, spyware and trojans. It also looks for behaviors that indicate an application might be misbehaving, and compares it against previously analyzed apps to detect possible red flags. Google actually run every application on Google’s cloud infrastructure and simulate how it will run on an Android device to look for hidden, malicious behavior. Google also analyze new developer accounts to help prevent malicious and repeat-offending developers from coming back.
Android malware downloads are decreasing The service has been looking for malicious apps in Market for a while now, and betGoogleen the first and second halves of 2011, Google saw a 40% decrease in the number of potentially-malicious downloads from Android Market. This drop occurred at the same time that companies who market and sell anti-malware and security software have been reporting that malicious applications are on the rise. While it’s not possible to prevent bad people from building malware, the most important measurement is whether those bad applications are being installed from Android Market - and Google know the rate is declining significantly.
If you ever wanted to access your Google Docs on your Android device but didn't have Internet connection, Google announced today that now you can. Now you can choose any file in Google Docs to make it available offline. Regardless of whether or not you are connected to the internet, you’re always connected to those files.
Additionally, Google Docs now will automatically update your offline files when you’re on Wi-Fi. You can also manually update files anytime you have a data connection by opening the file or tapping ‘Update’ from the Offline section of the app.
For Android tablets, Google also improved the Google Docs reading experience. Now, when you open a Google document on your tablet while online, you’ll get a high-resolution version of the document. Swipe left and right to flip between pages, or use the slider at the bottom to page ahead quickly.
Google today announced an update to Gmail app for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Google added the ability to set a custom signature for your mobile messages and a vacation responder, both available through the gear icon at the top of the menu view.
Google also improved labels with support for nested labels (see below). Additionally, if you are using iOS 5, Google changed the notification sound so that it’s easier to distinguish when you've received an email.
Google also got another fun feature to make your language even more colorful (in a good way!). In the Gmail app and Gmail for mobile you can now open up a canvas and scribble a message that will be attached to your email. It's perfect for sending a quick sketch that is hard to express in words or adding a fun graphic to make your email more personal.
Scribbles support different colors, brush sizes, lines, erasers and spray paint.
Google has made it faster and easier to discover movies, showtimes and theaters, from your smartphone. Now when you search for [movies] or your favorite theater like [century san francisco] on Google.com from your phone, you’ll see interactive results for movies in a new swipeable ribbon, with the most relevant information displayed at the top of the page.
For each movie, you’ll see the movie poster, a short summary, ratings and the nearest theaters and showtimes. Designed to help you quickly browse what’s playing in theaters now, this information instantly updates as you slide through the movie posters -- no need to wait for a page to load or to use the back button.
To learn more about a movie, tap the movie title to find details like the cast and a full summary. And if you see a play button on the movie poster,