Amazon’s back to school sale takes $20 or more off select Chromebooks and Chromeboxes

Amazon-Chromebook

Chromebooks are already making waves with educators and school districts and of course retailers are no exception. Amazon is currently running a back to school promotion that knocks $20 or more off the regular asking price of select Chromebooks. This brings some device’s like the Acer C720P Chromebook to an all time low. Other machines like the HP Chromebook 11, which features an Exynos 5 processor, 2GB of RAM and an 11.6-inch 1,366 x 768 display are available for $200.

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Google silently launches Chrome 64-bit Canary and Dev channel for Mac OS X users

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Google recently released a 64-bit version beta version of Chrome for Windows 7 and 8 users and for an encore the company has turned its efforts towards Apple’s OS X. The search giant has silently added 64-bit support to its Chrome Canary and Dev channels for Mac users. If you’re running the latest version of Canary on your Mac, the software should read as 64-bit capable in its About tab.

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Google improves Hangouts for Apps customers w/ 24/7 support, new features, expanded Chromebox for meetings availability, more

Google just announced that it’s improving the video call and meeting feature it offers to its Google Apps customers making the process of hosting video Hangouts much smoother. To kick things off, Google Apps for Business customers will now enjoy 24/7 phone support and a 99% uptime guarantee as Google movies Hangouts under the same Terms of Service as Apps. It’s also planning Google Apps Vault integration by the end of the year: Read more

Chromecast boasts 400 million casts as it celebrates its 1 year mark w/ 3 months of free Google Play Music All Access

Chromecast 1st birthday

Happy birthday, Chromecast! That’s what Google is saying today as it announced the HDMI media streaming stick has been used to cast content 400 million times in the 12 months since it launched. The Chromecast, of course, allows you to stream content from services like Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora to your HDTV from your Android or iOS as well as your computer via the Chrome browser.

We’ve added hundreds of your favorite apps, including WatchESPN, Pandora, Hulu Plus, HBO GO and PBS Kids; announced new features like mirroring your Android device to the TV and expanded to 30,000 stores across 20 countries.

That’s certainly a lot of casting from the $35 accessory, and Google is giving all Chromecast users 90 days of its Google Play Music All Access service for free to celebrate. The offer to redeem 3 months of free access to the $9.99/month music subscription service will run from today, July 24th, through September 30th, for all existing Chromecast customers not already subscribed to All Access. Read more

Google switching Chrome to its homemade BoringSSL to make its browser safer

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Google has exhausted a lot of resources patching up OpenSSL, so much in fact, the company has elected to create its own fork aptly named BoringSSL. Preparing to move the platform to Chrome, Mountain View recently worked this new implementation into its latest Chromium build. As indicated by its name, OpenSSL is an open source software used for secure connections. Several security holes in OpenSSL recently led to the now infamous Heartbleed scare that worked a large portion of the world into a frenzy.

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Google for Education moves over 1 million Chromebooks during Q2 of 2014

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Today, Google’s Senior Director of Global Enterprise Marketing, Chris Farinacci, announced that the search giant moved over 1 million Chromebooks through its Google for Education program during Q2 of 2014. Part of the company’s success is based on school districts and teachers using Google’s alternative laptops and software as tools to educate students.

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Google offering extended 90-day free trial of All Access w/ Chromecast purchase in some countries

Chromecast-promotion

Google is offering yet another promotion for those that purchase its $35 Chromecast HDMI streaming stick. Google’s $10/€10/month All Access Google Play Music streaming service usually comes with a month’s free access, but for a limited time Google is extending the trial to 90-days with the purchase of a Chromecast. The deal is already live in at least the UK, France, Germany, and Canada, but not in the US.  Read more

Google gives an early look at completely new Chrome OS experience dubbed Project Athena

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Google’s François Beaufort shared a screenshot today of a completely redesigned user experience for Chrome OS that he says the Chromium OS team is currently experimenting with. The screenshot shows a first draft that “consists in a collection of windows with some simple window management.” 

The project is called Athena and Beaufort shared instructions for checking it out in the Chromium source code (the open source project that Google’s Chrome OS shares its code with): Read more

Don’t freak out, Chrome’s Incognito mode has a new look

Incognito-Makeover

If you decide to privately browse the web for one reason or another, you might notice something a little different when you go into Incognito mode. Back in April, Google revealed that it was working on giving Chrome’s privacy tab a bit of a makeover and while its functionality pretty much remains unchanged, its landing page’s mascot no longer looks like the neighborhood watch guy.

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Google Chrome for iOS update adds Cast support to web pages, gets a tweaked icon

chrome-ios

Google has released an updated version of the Google Chrome application for iOS today, bringing at least one interesting new feature to the app: mobile websites that have Cast support will now work with all of your Cast-capable devices. It’s unclear how the feature works at the moment, but according to the release notes, developers are going to need to add support to their webpages before they can take advantage of the feature.

Also, as will likely be praised by iOS users everywhere, the version 36.0.1985.49 update goes the way of Google Hangouts and finally gets rid of the infamous “lip” located at the bottom of the app icon:

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Chromecast support now available for Popcorn Time for Android

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Controversial torrent streaming application, Popcorn Time has added Chromecast support for its Android app. This comes just one week after the software’s development team pledged streaming support for Google’s popular media dongle. If you’re not familiar with Popcorn Time, it’s like a black market version of Netflix’s video streaming service that uses peer-to-peer tech to get the job done. People often use the software to watch movies and TV shows that are still in only available in theaters, which of course is rubbing the motion picture industry the wrong way.

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