May 19, 2013
It was a great week for Google as the company announced new and revised products. Here are just some of the headline stories from the week that was.
Google makes its case as the innovator of the yearAnd the award for most innovative company of 2013 goes to ... Google? Okay, so we probably shouldn’t be getting ahead of ourselves. After all, the year isn’t even half over. Still, the Android maker has made its case for the title, and it is a good one. At Google I/O, the Mountain View, Calif.-based company offered its blueprint moving forward, and even the most skeptical among us should have been impressed. The most significant announcement was the launch of Google Play Music All Access. As I explained previously, the new streaming music service doesn’t exactly play nice with iOS devices. Regardless, its launch shows that Google wants to be a player in the emerging streaming market. And Apple? Rumors suggest that Cupertino’s revolutionary “iRadio” service could be DOA, at least at WWDC. The reason: Apple and the music industry are at odds over ... song skipping. As CNET confirmed, and Joe White noted:
Apple and Sony Music, the world’s second-largest music label, are still trying to hammer out details over how much Apple would pay for songs that people listen to a fraction of and then skip, according to people familiar with the negotiations. There could be other points of contention as well. Apple’s streaming music service, which most closely resembles Internet radio leader Pandora, has some features built into it that give users added control, such as the ability to rewind a song and skip to the next after listening to a portion of it, sources say.Google Play Music All Access wasn't the only product announced at Google I/O. The tech company also announced a new version of its highly popular Maps app for iOS. The forthcoming update includes deals from retailers and restaurants, and also Zagat reviews directly inside Google Maps. Additionally, the app's traffic alerts will soon expand to include live reports of incidents and accidents around the globe. Google also announced that an iPad specific version of Maps is coming soon.
Want to hangout?One of the most popular iOS features is about to get some serious competition. Google's Hangout app is a new communication tool that could soon measure up quite nicely with Apple's iMessage. Among its likely new features: SMS support. Dom Esposito had the story, courtesy of this brilliant video: For more coverage of Google I/O, see: Is Google Too Late To The Game With Its ‘Game Center’ Clone?, and Google Now Offering 15GB Of Shared Space Between Gmail, Drive, And Google+ Photos.
ABC and CW make big moves on Apple devicesABC has officially become the first U.S. network to offer live video streaming of its programming. Although currently available only to residents in New York City and Philadelphia, Watch ABC goes nationwide later this summer. Meanwhile, the CW is becoming the first U.S. network to launch a native app on the Apple TV set-top box. Arriving later this year, the app will be ad-supported, feature next-day availability of full episodes, and require no cable provider authentication.
Recommending Reading List, May 19, 2013
- Rovio Teams Up With Sony For Angry Birds Movie, Scheduled For A July 2016 Release by Joe White proves that those pesky fowl aren't going away anytime soon.
- Saying Goodbye To Apple’s Iconic Home Button by yours truly explains that the iPhone's only physical button could be going away.
- Tim Cook's CharityBuzz Auction Ends With A Winning Bid Of $610,000 by Joe White details the world's most expensive cup of coffee.
- You Can Now Show Your True Colors With Jawbone's Customizable Big Jambox by Aldrin Calimlim shows that when it comes to listening to music, it apparently helps to have the coolest looking speaker on the block.
- Apple Job Listing Points To Next-Generation iWork Suite by Joe White suggests that Apple's flagship productivity product for Mac could soon be getting a must-needed update.