Google adds 34-button scientific calculator to search results

You may already be aware that Google search provides a calculator that offers answers to queries, such as 2+2 directly, from the main search results page. As pointed out by a reader, Google recently updated the calculator search functionality, and it now provides a full HTML5 scientific calculator for these types of search queries. The features work with voice—except for on mobile devices, as they do not have access to the full scientific calculator presented on desktops.

Earlier this month, Google started to roll out a similar widget on its search page for unit conversions, like inches to centimeters. Now, unit conversion queries are presented with the live unit conversion tool (pictured below) that allows you to switch between units of measurements for temperature, length, mass, speed, digital storage, and much more.

Read more

Nexus Q now in stock and shipping from Google Play in 3-5 days

We knew the U.S.-made streaming device would ship sometime in July to those who preordered, but today Nexus Q is officially in stock on the Google Play store. It is shipping in “3-5 business days” to U.S. customers. Nexus 7 certainly had a good start. It sold out at several retailers, but many are skeptical the $299 media streamer will do as well.
Read more

Report: Google draws up antitrust settlement outline with EU to dodge legal battle

Google and the European Commission consented to the “outlines of a settlement” today, according to The Financial Times (via SearchEngineLand), which, if inked, would spare the search engine from official antitrust charges.

Europe’s premier competition watchdog has long accused the Mountain View, Calif.-based Company of abusing its dominance to suppress opponents in the market. Google previously said it would make company-wide changes to avoid a legal battle and expensive fines, and it seems the most recent outcome of those discussions is a new settlement draft of which the details are currently unknown. The rough deal reportedly also extends to a contentious matter that surfaced late in the talks—mobile search.

Joaquin Almunia, the European Union’s vice president of the European commission responsible for competition, sent a letter to Google Executive Chairperson Eric Schmidt in May. The letter detailed the antitrust investigation into Google’s search practices, and it offered the search engine a chance to remedy its “abuses” by settling.

“I have just sent a letter to Eric Schmidt setting out these four points. In this letter, I offer Google the possibility to come up in a matter of weeks with first proposals of remedies to address each of these points,” said Alumnia.

Read more

German court slaps EU ban on Samsung’s 7.7-inch Tab but somehow lets the 10-incher slide

A few months before Apple is set to release a 7.85-inch tablet of its own, it convinced a German court to ban Samsung’s similar-sized, year-old offering based on the look and feel of the 10-inch iPad. The ban would extend to the entire 27-member states of the European Union should it hold. Strangely, the same court decided that an iPad-sized 10.1N variety of the Galaxy Tab, which was just a 10.1 with a superficial makeover, should not be banned.

Samsung was both happy…

“Samsung welcomes the court’s ruling which confirms our position that the GALAXY Tab 10.1N does not infringe Apple’s intellectual property and does not infringe laws against unfair competition. Should Apple continue to make legal claims based on such a generic design patent, design innovation and progress in the industry could be restricted.”

and sad…

“Samsung is disappointed with the court’s ruling. We will continue to take all available measures, including legal action, to protect our intellectual property rights and defend against Apple’s claims to ensure our products remain available to consumers throughout the European Union.”

on the news.

Google celebrates Landsat’s 40th birthday, makes available timelapse videos of the Earth’s surface

Google just took to its official Lat Long blog to wish Landsat a “Happy 40th Birthday” and make its surface imagery live for the entire world to enjoy.

The revered satellite program essentially collects continuous images of the Earth to help smart folks, like scientists and researchers, make knowledgeable decisions on the economy and environment. Google Earth Engine has made Landsat’s data available to such experts anywhere in the world, but now it wants to give the public access.

Googler Eric Nguyen explained:

  • We’re working with the USGS and Carnegie Mellon University, to make parts of this enormous collection of imagery available to the public in timelapse videos of the Earth’s surface. With them you can travel through time, from 1999-2011, to see the transformation of our planet. Whether it’s deforestation in the Amazon, urban growth in Las Vegas or the difference in snow coverage between the seasons.
  • […] In 2008, the USGS opened access to the entire Landsat archive for free. Google Earth Engine makes it possible for this data to be accessed and used by scientists and others no matter where they are in the world.

A highlighted timelapse video is below:

Read more

Google wants YouTubers to ditch usernames, start using full names

As BetaBeat first noticed, Google is attempting to peel back the anonymity cloak that surrounds YouTube.

The search engine, which seems to dabble in all things Web, mobile, and tech, now displays a pop-up box to YouTubers who try to leave a video comment. The notice prompts users to start surfing the video-sharing platform with their full name instead of a username or pseudonym.

Google appears to crop names from Google+ profiles, which is likely a byproduct of the Google+ integration from last year that required all YouTubers to login with their Gmail account credentials.

Read more

Five or six new Kindle Fire tablets including 10-incher heading to Stables says company’s president

long-rumored refresh of Amazon’s Kindle Fire line was outed by Staple CEO Demos Parneros. According to a Reuters report, the CEO expects to see “five or six tablet SKUs” in Staples’ system shortly, including a larger 10-inch model. Amazon is rumored to release a new line of Fires as early as the end of the month, but it may be reloading with the success of the ASUS/Google Nexus 7.

One of those SKUs may also refer to a phone that is also rumored to be coming from the retail giant.

Meanwhile, Amazon has been busy building out its already extensive ecosystem with Social Gaming hooks.

It has not been discussed much at length, but I would also expect Amazon to be working on a HDTV-type of device that would play its movie and Prime selection. It could also go up against the Apple TV and Google TVs of the world.

Samsung hits 10M Galaxy S3 smartphones sold…in about 50 days

Last month, Samsung predicted sales of the Samsung Galaxy S3 to surpass 10 million units sold. Today, Samsung exec J.K. Shin confirmed Samsung reached its milestone.

 Shin Jong-kyun, the president of Samsung’s information technology and mobile communication division, told reporters that the phone has become a 10-million seller after it was first unveiled on May 29 in London. He, however, did not give exact numbers.

This translates into about 190,000 Galaxy S3s being sold every day, and easily ahead of its very popular predecessor — the Galaxy S2 — that reported sales hitting 10 million, five months after it reached consumers.

Samsung began selling the Galaxy S3 in the United States less than a month ago, and it began selling the S3 globally not even a month before that.

As a comparison, Apple sold 35 Million iPhones in its most recent quarter—including older models of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS. That is around 388,000 iPhones per day. Samsung obviously sells many lower-end Android smartphones too.

Our GS3 Review is here.

Read more

Google suspends taking orders for Nexus 7 16GB…simply didn’t make enough?

A trip over to the Google Play Store today yields a very disconcerting message for those who were hoping to get a 16GB Nexus 7. The purchase option has been replaced by a “Sign up to be notified by email when Nexus 7 (16GB) becomes available.”

The Guardian said Google simply ran out of the 16GB version. Mountain View, according to the publication, has none left, while a ramping up ASUS will not have new units until at least a few weeks out.

The 8GB version is still up for sale and expects to ship in three to five days. I guess folks are being old-fashioned and want to keep their media local.

The reason? Overwhelming demand that far outstripped Google’s expectations. It is next to impossible to find in the United Kingdom, and things are hit/miss even in the United States. eBay is already taking advantage by selling the Nexus 7 at premiums up to and over $100.

Welcome to the combination of supply chain logistics/successful products at Google.

Google announces Nexus S Jelly Bean rollout underway

On Google Plus, Google elaborated a little more on the carrier situation:

We’ve started rolling out Android 4.1, Jelly Bean, to Nexus S phones on a number of carriers including T-Mobile, H3G, O2, Rogers as well as Vodafone in most countries, with more to come. Enjoy!

[Foot tapping.]