Marketers have long been experimenting with "shoppable" videos, partnering with third-party technology providers to allow viewers to click on, say, a handbag in a music video or a lipstick in a makeup how-to to pull up product information and even make a purchase. Now, Google is releasing a "channel gadget" that brings some of that functionality to YouTube.
Here's how Google describes it, per a blog post published Wednesday:
"To shorten the path to purchase and translate video views to sales, today we’re introducing a new channel gadget on YouTube that will enable consumer goods brands to connect consumers directly with retailers throughout the entire YouTube experience. This new channel gadget will enable shoppers to seamlessly move from browsing how-to videos and featured products to finding which retailers carry them, check availability, compare prices and make a purchase, all with fewer clicks than today." Read more...More about Google, Youtube, Advertising, Video Advertising, and Unilever
Dubai is one of the world's most futuristic and visually striking cities. This timelapse video takes us on a stunning trip through its streets, waterways and skyscrapers
The entrancing clip was uploaded created by Vimeo user dimid. It's deservedly become a hit online since posting five days ago, with more than 100,000 views from travel addicts, video buffs and aficionados of random Internet goodness. Check it out for yourself, then let us know what you think in the comments
And if this just aggravated your travel itch, check out these 10 timelapse videos from around the world:Travel, Viral Videos, Middle East, Timelapse, and Watercooler
Following weeks of rumors that a new Google Maps design was imminent, the search engine giant announced a new look on Wednesday, and to sum it up: it looks spectacular.
Google has rebuilt Google Maps from "the ground up," with a focus on the design and interactions directly within the map.
From seeing clouds hovering over the world in real-time and how the Earth looks in the Milky Way as the sun sets, the new Google Maps essentially has Google Earth and Street View baked into it. With stunning Google imagery, as well as user-generated photos which can be uploaded and submitted to Google Maps, the platform has never looked better. Read more...More about Google, Mobile, Google Maps, Tech, and Apps Software
Google showed off during Wednesday's Google I/O Developers Conference a Chrome game that can build a race track based on the number of mobile devices presentRacer allows players to compete side-by-side on the track just rendered for them.
Racer uses HTML 5 to work on all devices, meaning it works with Android and iOS tablets and phones that can install the Chrome browser. You simply point your mobile Chrome to g.co/racer to set up and play. Once you've got your devices synced, the main color on top of the screen represents which color track your car is racing on.
To control Racer, you simply press on your screen to accelerate your car along its color-coded track. There's some subtlety needed, as cars can spin off the track if they blow past a curve too quickly. Read more...More about Gaming, Android, Chrome, Entertainment, and Dev Design
The easiest way to learn how to do something is often by seeing how it's done. But what can you really teach someone in just six seconds?
Vine, the rising video-sharing network, is full of short tutorial videos that illustrate everything from how Wiz Khalifa sleeps on planes to how to “drive with a death wish,” according to Noah Sebastian. Some viners have adopted Tuesday as the de facto day to post such videos, using the hashtag #HowTuesday.
Much of the advice is hilariously useless, but there are a few gems out there. We'll leave it to you to decide which is which. Here are some fun, strange, and insightful tips offered on Vine. Read more...More about Tips, Learning, Vine, Home Improvement, and Watercooler
Google announced a major upgrade to its Hangouts real-time communication service, rolling out a new stand-alone Hangouts app for the web, Android and iOS that will be available later Wednesday.
The app was introduced by Vic Gundotra, senior VP of engineering, at the Google I/O conference in San Francisco on Wednesday. He emphasized Google's intention of "getting gadgets out of the way," and giving people the ability to contact their friends, colleagues and loved ones on any platform, regardless of operating system.
"Why should OSes matter?," asked Gundotra. "People matter." He emphasized that the new Hangouts app will focus on conversations, rather than contacts. He added that contacts are still available with a single tap, and they'll be ranked by Google according to how often you talk to or chat with those contacts. Read more...More about Apps, Google Io, Hangouts, Social Media, and Google
Google announced on Wednesday at its Google I/O conference in San Francisco updates to its Google+ social networking platform, including a new image-focused design that resembles Pinterest and Facebook's existing layout.
The company added 41 new features to Google+ as a part of an effort to make it smarter and more intuitive, with the help of bigger pictures and related hashtags
The update includes a multi-column layout. Depending on the screen size and orientation — and what kind of device you're using — there will be one, two or three columns. Photos take center stage and fill the entire width of the stream, as a part of an effort to make it easier for users to scan the site. Read more...More about Google
Jay Harris is a high school football star in the Philadelphia area who committed to play his college ball next season at Michigan State. He's also a rapper known as "Jay DatBull." But the two identities, it seems, don't mix
A school spokesman, meanwhile, told the site that the decision to cancel the scholarship was "mutual." We've contacted the school for further comment and will update when we hear back.
The most popular of those videos, titled "DatBull 4 Life" and embedded below, has been viewed more than 50,000 times since being uploaded April 27. It features curse words, sexual language and drug references; Harris is smoking what appears to be a joint. Other videos, found here, revolve around similar themes Read more...More about College Sports, Entertainment, and Sports
Surround sound systems were all the rage a decade or so ago, but they've been overshadowed by simpler speakers like soundbars and iPod docks. So it's nice to see Bang & Olufsen inject some flash into the category with the BeoLab 14.
The BeoLab 14 doesn't look like your typical surround system. Instead of rectangular dark boxes, the speakers are round silver rings. The can be wall-mounted or placed on stands, and there are even optional ceiling mounts if you want to go that route.
Regardless of how your room wears them, the speakers' shiny aluminum rings will make it look pretty snazzy. Bang & Olufsen says it deliberately jacked up the style factor — even for B&O — to make the speakers more palatable to women, who tend to make the final decisions about home décor, according to the company's research. Read more...More about Speakers, Surround Sound, Tech, Bang Olufsen, and Home
Google announced on Wednesday during its big Google I/O developer conference in San Francisco a new effort called "Google Play for Education," which is designed for making devices and software affordable for educators.
Teachers can now buy apps and push then to a classroom of tablets at once, which then can be charged to a school account.
Last year, over a thousand schools in the U.S. are using Chromebooks and more than 2,000 new schools this year
"Chromebooks have gone mainstream in education — not just in US, but around the world," a Google spokesperson told attendees. Read more...More about Google, Tech, Apps Software, Mobile, and Google Play
Google Chrome is well on its way to having a billion active users
Google announced at its I/O developers conference on Wednesday that the browser now has 750 million active users, an increase of about 300 million users from the same time last year. Chrome first launched in beta in 2008.
Chrome passed Internet Explorer last year to become the most popular browser in the world.Google, Google Chrome, Tech, and Apps Software
Rovio Entertainment's long-awaited Angry Birds movie appears to be taking flight. The company on Wednesday announced both a distribution partner and a release date for the film, which is described as a 3-D animated comedy:
— Rovio Entertainment (@RovioHQ) May 15, 2013
Sony will be the global distributor of the film. "Sony impressed us with their great attitude, determination, and professionalism. They convinced us that we have found the right partners and team to help us market and distribute our first motion picture," said Rovio CEO Mikael Hed in a press release announcing the deal Read more...More about Movies, Sony, Angry Birds, Rovio, and Marketing
At Google I/O in San Francisco on Wednesday, Hugo Barra, Android's VP product management announced an unlocked "Google Edition" of the Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone.
"What you're seeing here is real," Barra said. He showed the user interface of the smartphone (pictured below), which he says is the same as the interface Google sells on its Nexus devices. "It's Google's take on Android," Barr added, noting that it will be available directly through Google Play in the U.S.
He announced the unlocked model will be available on AT&T and T-Mobile, will have LTE support, 16 GB of RAM that's expandable with an SD card, and its most appealing feature is that it's bootloader unlocked. The crowd of developers erupted in applause when he announced that this new Galaxy S4 will receive system updates "promptly with every Android platform update." Read more...More about Google Io, Unlocked, Tech, Apps Software, and Mobile
Google flaunted a new subscription music service, Google Play Music All Access, at Google I/O. The service, which Google says "blends your music collection with ours" across multiple devices, will launch Wednesday in the United States for $9.99 per month. People who subscribe by June 30 will pay only $7.99. It comes with a 30-day free trial and will eventually roll out to more countries
Google Play Music All Access will join the fray of existing music services and battle to have the most songs to stream and most usersSpotify, which boasts 24 million monthly active users and 6 million paying subscribers in 28 countries, has the largest music library with 20 million licensed songs when compared to Pandora, Slacker and iHeartRadio. Pandora still has the most users with roughly 70 million monthly active users and 200 million registered Read more...More about Google, Music, Entertainment, Google Io, and Streaming Music
Google announced tools to help developers make their Android games more social at the Google I/O Developer Conference Wednesday morning.
The suite of tools is part of updates to the Google Play Developer Console, which developers use to organize their apps released onto Android. Google announced a slew of updates it says will help get players engaged for longer.
SEE ALSO: Live From the Google I/O Keynote
Developers can now add leaderboards and achievements to their games that exist in Google Play. This allows players to compete against their friends through high scores. Achievements can be set to different actions performed in the game, such as beating a particular level or unlocking the highest difficulty mode. Read more...More about Gaming, Android, Google Io, Entertainment, and Google Play
The world’s cities are all trying to emulate Silicon Valley’s example and become the next global hub. Leading cities such as London, New York, Tel Aviv, Beijing and Berlin are all creating friendly conditions for startups to thrive, but other incipient companies in more unlikely places are also prospering.
Below, we've rounded up 25 startups Russia to New Zealand, Lagos to the Himalayas and Krakow to Uruguay to show that innovation is not about being in the right place — it’s about doing the right thing.
1. VisibleNation — Moscow, Russia
VisibleNation is an Anglo-Russian startup that offers a social data comparison service so users can share accurate information and data. Its free service allows people to access categories such as travel, career, education, finance, health and family to make lifestyle decisions. Read more...More about Startups, Features, Us World, Us, and World
One of the best pieces of work advice I’ve ever received—and yes, it was from my mother—was to make sure to take my lunch hour.
If you've gotten into the unhealthy habit of eating lunch at your desk, never seeing sunlight or feeling outside air on your skin for 10-hour stretches of time, you need to start taking a real lunch break. That hour can enhance your productivity, mindset and wellbeing.
Beyond brown-bagging it and grabbing a bench in the park (which, of course, is a totally great option), shake things up with one of these five creative ideas.1. Join a Lunch Network
Let’s Lunch is a free online network that matches you up with someone in your area for lunch during the workweek. Connect your LinkedIn profile, provide your availability and geographic flexibility, and the site’s algorithm matches you up with a like-minded lunch partner. It’s a great way to grow your network utilizing the free time that’s already built into your day. Read more...More about Productivity, Lunch, Workplace, Creativity, and Lifestyle
Google Cloud Messaging just got a big revamp during the big Google I/O conference held in San Francisco on Wednesday, and it's now a whole lot faster.
Last year, it announced Google Cloud Messaging, which lets you push data from servers to apps. Now, about 60% of the top 100 apps in the Google Play store use it today. About 200,000 push messages are sent each second
SEE ALSO: How to Watch the Google I/O Keynote
"GCM now supports connections between a persistent connection from servers to many devices as quickly as possible," a Google spokesperson told attendees. "It is also launching upstream messaging to send data in the other direction — from the app to servers." Read more...More about Google, Mobile, Cloud, Tech, and Apps Software
At the Google I/O keynote at the Moscone Center in San Francisco Wednesday , Google announced enhancements to its Android location services. It will be rolling out three new APIs to developers, all of which take advantage of all the sensors available on Android devices.
The first new API is called Fuse Location Provider, and it will make it so Android devices can acquire locations faster and more accurately. There's a new location mode that sips power, using less than 1% of users battery per hour.
Google says the second new API has been heavily requested by developers: geofencing. That will let developers define what's known as "virtual fences" around given geographical areas. It will allow developers to add up to 100 geofences per app Read more...More about Android, Google Io, Tech, and Apps Software
Google opened its I/O keynote on Wednesday by quoting a jaw-dropping stat: 900 million Android activations.
The figure comes after Google had claimed 400 million activations at last year's show. The OS was introduced four and a half years ago. As of July 2012, Android's chief rival, iOS, had 410 million activations
"People are adopting these devices at an amazing pace," Google SVP of Chrome and Android Sundar Pichai said. "When you look at all of these computing devices, it’s a multi-screen world … they have sensors, they can look, they can feel."
Pichai also announced that 48 billion apps have been installed on Android and 2.5 billion have been installed over the last month. Apple is closing in on 50 billion app downloads for iOS this week. Read more...More about Android, Ios, Business, and I O