Google announces over 20M Apps for Education users

As noted on the Official Google Blog, Google has now reached 20 million students using its Google Apps for Education products; and in celebration of World Teachers’ Day on Friday, the company posted some stats to highlight the product’s success. It is also highlighting amazing teachers on its Google in Education Google+ page. The first video (above) features Ms. Kornowski. She is “a science teacher at Kettle-Moraine High School in Wales, WI, who is using Google Forms to bring her students together.”

Some of the highlights of Google Apps for Education over the last year:

  • 400+ universities are posting lectures and/or full courses online using YouTube Edu
  • 600,000 staff from the Philippines Department of Education will now be using Google Apps
  • Universities across the continents are signing up for Apps, including schools inPoland, Spain, the Netherlands and Africa
  • More than 500 schools and districts went back to school with Chromebooks this fall
  • Seven of the eight Ivy League universities and 72 of this year’s top 100 U.S. universities (as determined by 2013 U.S. News and World Report’s ranking)have gone Google with Google Apps for Education

Time Warner Cable and AT&T want Google’s Kansas City Fiber deal

A new report from The Wall Street Journal claimed AT&T and Time Warner Cable are approaching Kansas City officials in an attempt to get the same deal Google has for its Google Fiber gigabit Internet service in the city. According to the report, the companies are after the same free office space, assets, and infrastructure, and government employees the city has agreed to provide Google:

Among the sweeteners granted Google by both cities are free office space and free power for Google’s equipment, according to the agreement on file with the cities. The company also gets the use of all the cities’ “assets and infrastructure”—including fiber, buildings, land and computer tools, for no charge. Both cities are even providing Google a team of government employees “dedicated to the project.”… For the past few months Time Warner Cable has been negotiating with Kansas City, Kan.,to get a “parity agreement” granting it the same concessions as Google got, the city and the company says. Time Warner Cable has already signed such a deal with Kansas City, Mo… AT&T also has approached Kansas City, Mo., for the same deal, according to a person familiar with the matter.

HTC One X+ unveiled: 1.7GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and strictly matte black

HTC unveiled its all-new flagship this morning: the HTC One X+. Looking very similar to its HTC One X brethren, the One X+ packs most of its changes inside. HTC has included a powerful 1.7GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor, 2,100mAh battery with six hours more talk-time, 64GB of storage, and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with HTC’s custom Sense 4+ on top. HTC said the One X+ is “67 percent faster than the HTC One X LTE.”

Furthermore, the HTC One X+ will only ship in black rather than the white and charcoal gray featured on the HTC One X. Past the color change, not much else has changed on the outside. HTC stuck with Beats branding and the same 4.7-inch Gorilla Glass screen. The software on the device is certainly welcome, as the HTC One X+ features Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with HTC’s own Sense 4+ flavor. HTC further announced this morning that the HTC One S and HTC One X would be updated with similar software set in October.

The HTC One X+ will hit Europe and North Asia sometime this month, with South Asia following in November. HTC said North America availability would be unveiled separately. Is anyone sad to see just minor changes? That processor just has to zoom.

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Google airs new Google+ for Android commercial

The oh-so hip Plus team over at Google released a new commercial today. The 1 minute and 13 second clip shows off Google+ for Android’s array of features, including the app’s ability to share life “as it happens” and seeing the latest from your friends at the touch of your fingertips. It is not clear where the new commercial will air (most likely just the web), but it should encourage users to download the Google+ for Android app. Check out how Google’s Nexus 7 ad stacked up against AppleRead more

People power: Gmail goes live in Iran after one-week block

Theocratic countries have blocked Google’s products left and right, but a new report from Reuters today indicated Iran is lifting its one-week-old block on Gmail due to a flurry of official complaints.

According to Reuters:

Iranian authorities have reopened access to Google Inc’s email service a week after blocking it, a government official and Iranians said on Monday.

Iran maintains one of the world’s largest Internet filters, blocking access to tens of thousands of websites on the grounds that they are criminal or immoral, but the block on Gmail had even prompted complaints in parliament.

Gmail reportedly went live again for Iranians Sunday night, after an official announced on Sept. 23 that Iran would block YouTube throughout the country “until further notice.” Committee Member Mohammad Reza Aghamiri told the Mehr news agency that Gmail’s ban was an ” unintended consequence” of trying to block YouTube. Various local news agencies attributed the banning of YouTube to a controversial anti-Islam film posted on Google’s video-sharing platform.

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Report: Google acquires Ukrainian facial recognition company Viewdle

According to a report from Forbes (via TNW), Google just closed a deal last week to acquire Ukrainian augmented reality and facial recognition startup Viewdle. The exact amount Google paid for the company is unclear, but Forbes’ sources said it was somewhere in the neighborhood of the $30 million to $45 million. That puts the purchase price in between the $30 million figure the company expected to get and the amount Google paid for similar companies PittPatt ($38 million) and NevenVision ($45 million).

Viewdle has its SocialCamera Android app, both iOS and Android versions of its face recognition SDK, and several patents related to face detection and augmented reality applications. The translation of the report seems to indicate Motorola had previously been an anonymous bidder interested in purchasing the company:

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Google Catalogs launches on the web as part of Google Shopping

Google announced on the Google Commerce blog today that it is finally bringing the previously tablet-only Google Catalogs shopping experience to the web. The catalogs will now be available to browse through any web browser as part of Google Shopping, and they will feature the same collection of issues from partners such as Eddie Bauer, J.Crew, and Williams Sonoma. To visit Google Catalogs on the web, go to www.google.com/shopping/catalogs

Once you find a catalog you like, click on the issue to open the catalog viewer where you can flip through catalog pages and zoom in to see products up close. To view information about specific products, roll your mouse over the page and click the tag for the product you’re interested in. This opens a box with more information, additional views, and price. Clicking ‘View Details’ takes you directly to the retailer’s site to learn more or make a purchase.

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YouTube to live stream Presidential and Vice Presidential debates, also adds 22 AOL-curated channels

YouTube is continuing its dominance in the online video space today by announcing plans to live stream the 2012 Presidential and Vice Presidential debates and launch AOL’s entire original video content library through 22 curated channels.

Woah. Google launched the YouTube Elections Hub in August as a complete video resource for all-things political until the U.S. Election Day on Nov. 6. The Hub features videos from politicians, parties, and well-known media, as well as shared coverage with live and on-demand content from ABC News, Al Jazeera English, BuzzFeed, Larry King, The New York Times, Phil DeFranco, Univision, and the Wall Street Journal.

Now, according to the official YouTube blog, Google announced the Hub would broadcast the four general election debates starting Oct. 3 at 9 p.m. EST:

Throughout the month of October, President Barack Obama and Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney will go head-to-head in a series of highly-anticipated general election debates. This year, for the first time, you can watch the debates live and in full on the YouTube Elections Hub, via our partners at ABC News, who will be live streaming all four debates on the ABC News YouTube channel. No matter where you are in the world or how you’ll be accessing the internet, you’ll be able to watch the most important events of the 2012 election on YouTube.

YouTube will also post highlight clips at YouTube.com/politics after the debate for the busy folks unable to tune-in live.

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Google kicks off Advertising Week 2012 sessions

As part of Advertising Week running from October 1-5 in New York, Google is hosting more than 20 sessions with topics ranging from The Mobile Playbook, to YouTube seminars, to a master class in Google Analytics. Over on the company’s Think with Google website, Google highlighted the sessions, some of which take place at conferences and trade shows outside of Advertising Week. Today Google has a number of sessions ending with a keynote by Vice President of Sales Jim Lecinski 4:00pm. Advertising Week has a live stream on its website of the events, and we’ll be bringing you anything interesting as it goes down.
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AT&T bulks 4G LTE roster with James Bond’s Sony Xperia TL

AT&T started October with a bang by confirming plans to offer its version of the IFA 2012-unveiled Sony Xperia T, the Sony Xperia TL.

The black Xperia TL features a 4.55-inch 720p display, 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 13-megapixel camera, 1080p HD video recording, and one-touch enabled NFC. AT&T further noted support includes 4G LTE connectivity, and the smartphone would launch with Android 4.0.4 preloaded. An update to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean will hit soon after. Aside from a brief notice about the upcoming James Bond “Skyfall” flick apparently slated to feature the Xperia TL, there are no additional details available.

Oh, and 9to5Google asked reps if NFC capability hints that Google Wallet is on board. We will update with more information if confirmed.

Check out the full press release below.

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Google’s Market cap passes Microsoft for the first time in history, closes $19B in 10 months

Google’s Market cap passed Microsoft this morning for the first time, as first noted by a Bloomberg news tweet.

Google trailed Microsoft by $19 billion earlier this year. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company closed the Market cap gap in just 10 months, however, forcing the once-goliath Microsoft to now walk in the footpaths of Google and Apple as the world’s most valuable tech companies.

Check out the fight in realtime: 

Microsoft currently boasts a $3 billion lead over Google, according to Business Insider, which cited Yahoo Finance, but their points are bound to sway if Google continues to swell.

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AT&T announces Galaxy Note II, Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, Galaxy Express, & Galaxy Rugby Pro

AT&T just sent out a press release announcing the addition of four new devices including three Samsung smartphones and one tablet. Now added to the AT&T LTE Android lineup: the new Galaxy Note II, which we recently got hands-on time with when it unveiled in Berlin; the 4-inch waterproof Galaxy Rugby Pro; the 4.5-inch Galaxy Express; and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1-inch tablet.

Samsung did not provide exact pricing and release dates for any of the devices, but it said all-new models would become available “in the coming months.” Go below for specs on each device from the AT&T press release:

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