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Google Adds Developer Community Resources for Google Assistant

As part of its Google Assistant SDK launch into developer preview, Google is also working to create community around its developer resources. As the competition for voice-assisted AI heats up between Amazon (Alexa), Microsoft (Cortana), Apple (Siri), and others, community could be one factor that tips the scale  – well, besides consumer votes through dollar spend. We’ve created a new developer community on Google+ at for developers to keep up to date and discuss ideas. There is also a stackoverflow tag [google-assistant-sdk] for questions, and a mailing list to keep up to date on SDK news. Looking for an awesome, no-nonsense technical conference for IT Pros, Developers, and DevOps? IT/Dev Connections kicks off in San Francisco in 2017!

Developer Preview of Google Assistant SDK Launched Today

Google today has made available a new Google Assistant SDK and with this release wants developers to start putting Google AI onto any hardware… With this SDK you can now start building your own hardware prototypes that include the Google Assistant, like a self-built robot or a voice-enabled smart mirror. This allows you to interact with the Google Assistant from any platform. Developers can go here to get it: Looking for an awesome, no-nonsense technical conference for IT Pros, Developers, and DevOps? IT/Dev Connections kicks off in San Francisco in 2017!

Google Adds Scheduled Pause Feature to Wi-Fi Device

Google’s Wi-Fi devices may not be the most popular but the company continues to add popular features to make the devices more appealing to a wider audience. The latest update brings a new “scheduled pause” feature. As the feature name suggests, the feature allows Google Wifi owners to pause the Internet for periods of time. For families, this could be a great way to get kids to stop consuming the Internet and staring blankly ad device screens during dinner. For those with difficulty getting to sleep, setting a bedtime schedule could be valuable. On the surface this seems like a great feature. However, if you have devices that need a connection overnight – like PCs or home assistant devices that are scheduled to update overnight – you’ll need to be carefu...

Google Couldn’t Help It – Audio Ads are Here for Google Home Devices

Well, that didn’t last long. Google has worked to make the public think its a lot of things, but at its core the company is just an ad broker. Reports are beginning to roll in that the Google Home device is beginning to insert audio ads into normal news and weather updates. On Reddit… This morning while I was getting ready for work, I did my usual “Okay Google, good morning”. After information about the time and weather, my google home said something along the lines of By the way, Beauty and The Beast opens in theaters today. In this version, Belle is the inventor. Sounds more like it to me. I’m not a fan of ads on this device. I don’t believe I’ve done any searching for the film either, so I think it’s not due to perceived interest. Has anyo...

Clarity: The Touchscreen Smart Speaker that Combines Alexa and Google

A new offering that has already achieved its funding goal on Indiegogo might be the next cool thing for both Alexa and Google Assistant users. The Clarity is an Alexa-enabled smart speaker with a touchscreen built-in. So, you can use both voice and touch to listen to music and watch movies. And, because its an Android tablet, will work with any app in the Google Play store and also Google Assistant at the same time as Alexa. Clarity is the first Touchable Dual-Voice-Control Smart Speaker with Alexa and OK Google. You can easily control the device by touch and voice. Clarity can play music and movies, provide information, news, sports scores, weather, recipes etc. Early bird pricing is set at $99. Get on board here: Clarity: Alexa & Android Touchscreen Smart Speaker Follow me on Twitter...

Google Takes Its Fight with Alexa to Android Handsets

Amazon’s emergence as the leader in voice AI over the 2016 holiday, which was then further cemented by the number of integrations announced at CES 2017, has seemingly caught other AI dabblers by surprise. Both Microsoft and Google have both been working feverishly on VR and augmented VR, touting those as the next significant platform, while Amazon instead delivered the next actual platform – voice-enabled AI. VR and augmented VR have very specific applications so far, but the ability to use voice to control and manage life and work through technology reaches everyone, everyday, and in almost every situation. Both Microsoft and Google have been seen scrambling. Microsoft is rumored to deliver a new Cortana development toolkit soon, while Google has begun trying to match Amazon&#...

Google Courting More Businesses with Exchange Task Synchronization

Google has taken the wraps off a Gmail app update that brings more integration with Microsoft Exchange. In this latest update, the Gmail app now synchronizes Task lists with corporate Exchange servers. This new feature synchronizes your tasks with Exchange so you can always stay on top of your task list, even when you’re on the go. You can create a task, edit its date or priority, and flag an email as a to-do for later response.  Full details: Get more work done on Android: Exchange Tasks now available on Gmail app Looking for an awesome, no-nonsense technical conference for IT Pros, Developers, and DevOps? IT/Dev Connections kicks off in San Francisco in 2017!

Google Assistant Coming to More Android Phones

The voice AI wars are on! After Apple’s Siri, Microsoft made advances early with Cortana. But, during the 2016 holiday season Amazon took a strong lead by outfitting millions of homes with its affordable Alexa-enabled devices. Not to be diminished quickly, Google has made several advances of its own recently, in an effort not to fall too far behind the competition. Google Home is the company’s Alexa competitor and now Google is also promising to bring its Google Assistant quickly to more devices by enabling non-Google Android handsets to integrate. The Google Assistant will begin rolling out this week to English users in the U.S., followed by English in Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom, as well as German speakers in Germany. We’ll continue to add more languages over the...

Google Tailors Its Cloud Search to G Suite Business Customers

Google is continuing its push to attempt at making a dent in Microsoft’s Office 365 dominance. Google hopes to eventually be taken seriously as a business suite, instead of just a free add-on for academics. Today the company has announced a rebranded product that is now called “Cloud Search” that integrates privacy and convenience for customers already using its G Suite product. Today, we’re announcing Google Cloud Search (formerly known as Springboard), a new product that uses machine intelligence to provide a unified search experience across G Suite. Read the full announcement: Introducing Google Cloud Search: Bringing the power of Google Search to G Suite customers Looking for an awesome, no-nonsense technical conference for IT Pros, Developers, and DevOps? IT/Dev Conn...

Gmail to Lose Windows XP and Vista Support This Year

Google stopped releasing updates for its Chrome web browser for Windows XP and Windows Vista after version 49, in hopes that users would migrated away from Microsoft’s unsupported operating systems to take advantage of Chrome’s new features and better security. While the number is dwindling, there are still many running these old, unsupported versions of Windows. In December 2017, Google will stop supporting Gmail in Chrome running on Windows XP and Windows Vista. Gmail will still work, but Google will start redirecting users to an feature-hampered HTML version of Gmail. Looking for an awesome, no-nonsense technical conference for IT Pros, Developers, and DevOps? IT/Dev Connections kicks off in San Francisco in 2017!

Google Covers Another Cloud Adoption Angle Through Partnership with Intel

Google’s hope is that companies want to move their on-premises operations completely to the cloud. Google has never had an on-premises play like Microsoft, so the predominantly search-focused company truly can’t speak to what Enterprises really want. Enterprises are focused solely on hybrid cloud operations these days and despite a lot of marketing play suggesting companies are marching to the cloud, that’s just not the case. Google’s cloud success is pinned on a full and complete migration from on-premises to the cloud, since the company has nothing of value to offer Enterprises that choose to keep certain functions in-house. But, through a new partnership with Intel announced today, you can expect the company will be working hard to convince Enterprises that cloud...