We expect SMS integration will only be available on Android as iOS doesn’t allow the necessary hooks to pull off the feature, which makes the platform that much more appealing for fans of the Hangouts service.
Samsung’s Galaxy S4 smartphone runs a custom variant of Android, which allows the company to include features not on other Android phones including Google’s own Nexus phones, but the feature-heavy OS comes at the cost of using half the capacity on a 16GB device.
Following its I/O keynote address today, Google just announced on its commerce blog that it will soon be integrating Google Wallet features into Gmail to allow users to send and receive money. The feature will be available to those with a Google Wallet account and will initially be available to users 18 and older in the US:
Google Wallet is now integrated with Gmail, so you can quickly and securely send money to friends and family directly within Gmail — even if they don’t have a Gmail address. It’s free to send money if your bank account is linked to Google Wallet or using your Google Wallet balance, and low fees apply to send money using your linked credit or debit card.
Google will be adding a new $ icon next to the paperclip icon for attachements that will allow users to “attach money” to messages in Gmail by simply entering the amount and clicking send.
Google noted that the feature will first only be available on the desktop, but that users can also send money through wallet.google.com on mobile devices.
It isn’t a Nexus but it might as well be. Google announced a special version of the Samsung Galaxy S4 that will run stock Android, has an open boot loader and get updates straight from Google. You can buy 16GB (with open SD card slot) for AT&T and T-Mobile at the Play Store for $649 starting on June 25th.
We knew from leaks in the weeks leading up to I/O that Google was planning some gaming related announcements and today the company has officially announced the service in a press release ahead of its Google I/O keynote taking place now. Not only will the service allow Android developers to build in real-time multiplayer, social features, achievements, and leaderboards while storing game saves and settings in the cloud, the SDK for Google Play game services will also be available to iOS and web developers.
Google noted a few titles for Android have already been updated with the feature including World of Goo, Super Stickman Golf 2, Beach Buggy Blitz, Kingdom Rush, Eternity Warriors 2, and Osmos.
Not surprisingly, the cross-platform gaming service will also build in Google+ integration to track high scores, achievements and more:
-Achievements that increase engagement and promote different styles of play.
-Social and public leaderboards that seamlessly use Google+ circles to track high scores across friends and across the world.
-Cloud saves that provide a simple and streamlined storage API to store game saves and settings. Now players never have to replay Level 1 again.
-Real-time multiplayer for easy addition of cooperative or competitive game play on Android devices. Using G+ Circles a game can have up to 4 simultaneous friends or auto-matched players in a game session together with support for additional players coming soon.