‘Ok Google’ voice detection rolling out for 7 new languages including Russian, Korean, more

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Google today appears to be rolling out much wider support for its “Ok Google” command within Search. This update pertains solely to the ability to say “Ok Google” within Google Now and the search box to activate a command or search and have Google automatically detect when you say it. Previously, this feature was supported only in the US, Canada, France, and Germany. Today’s update adds support for 7 new language locales, including Italian, Portuguese, and Japanese. Google’s been testing these languages in these regions for a little while now, so it’s possible that you could have been one of the lucky testers.

  • English (now supports all accents / dialects)
  • Spanish (Spain and Mexico only)
  • Italian
  • Portuguese (Brazilian only)
  • Russian
  • Korean
  • Japanese

The update appears to be rolling out gradually, so it may take a little while to hit your device. You also need to be on the most recent version of the Google Search

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Canadian court orders Google to remove company from web search results

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A recent ruling by the European Union Court of Justice (ECJ) ordered Google to remove old web search results that could possibly have a negative impact on a person’s reputation. Often referred to as “the right to be forgotten,” individuals are able to request that “outdated or irrelevant” information about them be purged from the web, but what about non-living entities? Taking its cues from this controversial ruling, a Canadian court has ruled that Google must remove search results for a company’s rival — not only in Canada but around the world.

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Buy a Chromecast in Canada by June 30th and score a $20 Google Play credit

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Canadians who purchase a Chromecast between June 9th - 30th will receive a $20 CAD Google Play credit from Mountain View. The deal is available on purchases made through Google Play and authorized retailers. To redeem your Google Play credit, you’ll need to set up your Chromecast before July 30th and visit the device’s special offers page.

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Google Play Music All Access now streaming in Canada

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Google’s Play Music All Access subscription streaming service is today arriving for Canadian users almost a year after first launching in the U.S. and Europe. A report from the CBC notes that Google is expected to make an official announcement today ahead of the Canadian Music Week event kicking off May 6.

Google is already listing Canada as supported for All Access on its website and Canadians should now be able to access the subscription service online and through the Android app Read more

Cute corners of the Google Maps world: fictitious towns & polar bears

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Search for Agloe, NY, in Google Maps and the small town will duly appear. Which is odd, as Agloe doesn’t exist, and never has.

BigThink reports that Agloe was one of a number of ‘paper towns,’ places that were invented by early map-makers back in the 1930s in order to catch out rival companies who stole their work.

How do you prove someone stole your map, if that map accurately reflects reality? The answer: add fantasy! Mapmakers had been able to take their competitors to court by pointing out fake places (a.k.a. paper towns) on their maps that were copied from their original work! For this reason, fictitious roads are often called trap streets: because they entrap the company copying them onto their own maps …  Read more

Google launches “Video Quality Report” to test ISP performance based on YouTube playback

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Google today announced a new project designed to test the quality and connection speeds of internet service providers. The service, known as Google’s Video Quality Report, will be available in Canada  first, though it should expand to more countries as time progresses.

To perform the test, Google uses data related to how well the ISP can handle playing back a high definition YouTube video. The ISPs are graded based on the performance of other providers in a given area. If the ISP is able to load 90% of 720p YouTube videos, then it will be branded as “YouTube HD Verified” for the area and be at the top of the verification scale.

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