Back in the heady days of the early 2000s, early social networking services like Tribe.net, Friendster, MySpace and (yep) Facebook all offered similar features: connecting with other folks via the world wide web. Orkut, founded in 2008 and owned by Google, is named after the engineer who created the service as a 20 percent project.
Of course, once Facebook became the de-facto social network in the US, services like Orkut all but disappeared here. Even so, Orkut was huge in Brazil, and even migrated to servers based there in 2008. Heck, there was even an Android and iOS app.
Unfortunately for Brazilians and other hold-outs, Orkut is shutting down in September of 2014. As of July 30, new users won’t be able to create new accounts on the service, either.
Sooner rather than later, Google will be tracking your every move.
The Mountain View search colossus already knows whether you have the flu or are interested in dropping a few pounds, thanks to its mining of your search data and Gmail missives.
Thanks to Google’s recent bargain buy of tiny satellite company Skybox Imaging — a purchase that cost Google just $500 million, or 1/38 what Facebook shelled out for WhatsApp — by 2016, Google may be able to predict market-moving factors like consumer spending and oil prices.
That means Google might be able to foretell when you’ll be waiting in line for the latest iPhone.
Nest, which is now owned by Google, pioneered the idea of a smart thermostat. Now several years later, Honeywell has a Nest competitor that might actually do well in the consumer market.
Called Lyric, Honeywell’s new WiFi-connected thermostat costs $279 and will be available at a Lowe’s near you by August. While it may be too late for the Lyric to compete with the Nest, Honeywell sees it as just the beginning of its entry into the world of the the smart, always-connected home. And being a launch partner with Apple’s HomeKit in iOS 8 could mean that more people buy the Lyric over Nest in the months to come.
Since the airing of Apple’s iconic “1984” commercial to launch the Macintosh, tech companies have had a special relationship with the Super Bowl. Now Apple is one of several tech giants — including Google, Yahoo and Intel — which have chipped in $2 million each in cash and services to help offset taxpayer dollars involved with bringing the historic 50th Super Bowl to the San Francisco 49ers stadium in Santa Clara, California.
Congress has dropped the ball on surveillance reform, according to Tim Cook and a host of other top tech CEOs throughout the country.
In a full-page ad printed in today’s Washington Times, the tech companies tell the Senate it’s been a year since revelations on the NSA’s over reach were made known to citizens, but Congress has failed to pass a version of the USA Freedom Act that would restore the confidence of internet users.
The new Spotlight search in Yosemite (photo: Roberto Baldwin/ The Next Web)
Apple and Google aren’t the good friends they used to be thanks to the rise of Android as the iPhone’s main competitor. Ever since Apple axed Google Maps in iOS 6, it has been clear that Google’s days in Apple’s software are numbered.
The hardest Google service for Apple to replace is undoubtedly search. Siri is slowly becoming its own search engine of sorts that draws from multiple services like Wolfram Alpha and Wikipedia, but Google has remained the standard for traditional web search.
In iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, Google is still set as Safari’s default search engine. But with the introduction of more search partners in Apple’s new software, it’s hard to believe that Google search will enjoy its prominence for much longer.
Google has overtaken Apple as the world’s most valuable brand, according to a new survey.
As per Millward Brown’s BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands, Apple’s brand value fell by 20% in the past year to just under $148 billion, while Google’s value increased by 40% to $159 billion.
“Google has been extremely innovative this year with Google Glass, investments in artificial intelligence and a range of partnerships,” says Benoit Tranzer, regional managing director of Millward Brown Europe. “All these activities send a very strong signal to consumers about the essence of Google.”
Apple and Google are bringing out the white flags. A landmark decision has been reached between the two Silicon Valley giants to drop their patent lawsuits against each other, specifically with regards to Google’s Motorola Mobility.
Google has bought Quest Visual, the company behind the popular Word Lens translation app.
Apple’s most recent iPhone 5s ad featured Word Lens, and rightfully so; it’s one of the most magical tools you’ll ever use on a smartphone. The app works by instantly translating text in different languages seen through the iPhone’s camera. It’s an astounding piece of technology, and it will now be incorporated into Google Translate.
The good news is that now is the best time to download Word Lens, because its creators have made all of its language packs free for a limited time.