Google aims to unify app design with new ‘Quantum Paper’ framework

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Leading up to Google I/O this year, we’ve seen a handful of leaks regarding the design of Android. We’ve seen redesigned apps leak, such as calendar, the dialer, and Gmail, as well as updated icons. According to a new report out of Android Police, all off these recent design leaks and updates have been apart of a new program within Google called Quantum Paper.

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Supposed Google+ app redesign shown off in leaked screenshots

We’ve seen a lot of leaks regarding Google apps recently, including supposed new icons for Android, new features for Google Now, and a new Gmail interface. This time around, Google+ user Yoel Kaseb has allegedly obtained screenshots of a completely redesigned Google+ app for Android.

Kaseb says the app is unstable and still an early test build, but the design appears to follow the same trends as other recently leaked Google interfaces. Kaseb has also been locked out of the APK by Google and can no longer use the interface, which does lend some credibility to the validity of the images.

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Your TV screen could soon act as a personalized dashboard with Chromecast update

The homescreen could in future emulate the MyCast app

The Chromecast homescreen could in future emulate the MyCastScreen app

Reddit user asjmcguire has spotted code in a recent Chromecast update suggesting that the standby screen which currently displays only a clock and images chosen by Google could in future be rather more useful.

The code appears to allow for future support of weather and a slideshow of user-defined photos. If Google does indeed implement this, we can see the possibility of expanding it into a complete personalized dashboard, with information pulled from your Google Calendar and Google Now feed, and perhaps user-selected news sources. Come down in the morning, switch on your TV and see at-a-glance all the info you might want to start your day …  Read more

Google rolling out support for Gmail and Google Calendar data export

Google is rolling out support to its take out service for exporting email and appointment data from its Gmail and Google Calendar services, the company announced today.

While Google often supports data exporting when sunsetting a service, the company says in this instance it’s simply allowing users the ability to better archive personal data and switch to other services with less friction. Read more

Cal by Any.do hits Google Play, instantly becomes my calendar app of choice

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The moment I saw news hit that Cal by Any.do hit the Google Play store I wanted to run around the room screaming at the top of my lungs. Ok, maaaaybe I wasn’t that excited, but I love this app so much from iOS that it will instantly become my Android calendar app of choice. I’d download this twice if I could, if only because that’s how much I encourage you to give this a shot.

Google Play Cal by Any.do

From the makers of the popular to-do list Any.do, Cal is a “free, simple & smart calendar app for your Android. With a fast, intuitive and beautifully designed interface Cal is the only Calendar app you’d want to have on your homescreen.

With Cal:
■ Your events will come to life beautifully with smart maps, contacts, apps and social integrations.
■ Seamlessly connects with all your existing calendar services so you’re always up to date (supports Google Calendar, Exchange, Outlook, Yahoo, AOL & iCloud)
■ Fast and intuitive – Schedule with one click and use voice control to add events
■ Awesome widget – We’ve created a widget that makes any peak at the agenda – a fun experience
■ New day, Every day – Each day starts with a fresh & gorgeous photo to celebrate the day in a fun way.
■ Daily Planning made simple. By connecting Cal with Any.DO you can check out your Any.do tasks for the day.
■ It’s always someone’s birthday. Write on your friends wall, buy a gift, make a call, or send them a message. It’s really easy.
■ At your fingertips – Cal makes it easy to find great places, restaurants, and bars nearby for meeting friends, family, and coworkers
■ Scheduling made easy – Simply jump to a specific date from the month view or swipe to next week.
■ Need a ride? Call an Uber with one click from Cal (available on supported locations)
■ Landscape view – tilt your phone for a more open view of your calendar (Android only feature!

Glass XE11 update adds commands to search Google Calendar, get directions home, & more

Google today announced its XE11 update for Google Glass and highlighted a few of the new features on its Google+ page for the wearable. New for Google Glass is the ability to search Google Calendar with commands like “my agenda” and “what am I doing in November?” Google noted that “Calendar search works for Google Calendar users with Gmail and private search enabled.” 

The update also includes a highly requested feature from users in the XE11 update: the ability to get directions home or to work with voice commands:

It’s even easier to find your way home. Tell Google Maps where you live and work and you can refer to their locations by “home” or “work” on Glass. It’s part of Google’s personalized search so when you ask Glass for directions home, it’ll know what you mean. To get started, insert your home and work address in Google Maps or Google Now (iOS instructions) and then try it out on Glass. From the home screen, say “ok glass, get directions to home.

Glass-screencast-shortcutNew Glass users will notice a redesigned Glass setup tutorial in XE11 (pictured above) that Google says will show users how to swipe and connect Glass to the companion smartphone app. You’ll also now see a “Start screencast” shortcut in the notification drawer of your connected Android device making it easier to quickly start screencasting Glass to your smartphone.

Lastly, Google has removed a feature from Glass with XE11. You’ll no longer be able to activate Google Search with a long press of the touchpad because many users were apparently triggering it accidentally: Read more

Gmail adds ability to create Google Calendar events directly from inbox

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Google is beginning to roll out a new feature in Gmail today that will allow users to quickly and easily create or add an event to Google Calendar without ever leaving their inbox. Once the feature has been enabled, users will be able to click the date and time within emails to add or create an Google Calendar entry using the data from the email (as pictured above). The calendar entry  can be edited before added and will also automatically include a link back to the original email for reference:

When you click on one of these underlined dates, you’ll be able to preview your schedule for the day and change the title, date or time of the event. Clicking “Add to Calendar” will do exactly that — add the event to your calendar, and for extra convenience, the calendar event will include a link back to the original email.

Keep an eye out for the new feature rolling out to everyone using the English (US) language setting over the next week.

Google hopes to bring December back to Android 4.2…by December?

Those that updated to Android 4.2 might have noticed a bug that prevents users from selecting December for events like birthdays inside of the People app. Google has now officially addressed the issue in a post on the Android Google+ page by confirming that it plans to fix the bug before December:

We discovered a bug in the Android 4.2 update, which makes it impossible to enter December events in optional fields of the People app (this bug did not affect Calendar). Rest assured, this will be fixed soon so that those of you with December birthdays and anniversaries won’t be forgotten by your friends and family.

Google releases official Google Calendar app on Google Play

Use Google Calendar to mange your day-to-day? You’re in luck, as Google has released an official Google Calendar for Android app on Google Play this evening, allowing users to keep track of their calendar right from their Android device. The app (which at one time was exclusive to the Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S) features that ability to create, edit, and delete events, view calendars (including non-Google) in one spot, and quickly email related people to event with a customizable message. Google Calendar is available for Android 4.0.3 devices or higher. Google does warn that there are some issues with HTC devices: [Google Play via Official Android]

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Google allowing more users in field trial for Gmail results in Google Search

Google has opened its Google search+ Gmail result beta further this afternoon so more users can get Gmail results in their main Google Search. The feature was first introduced in a limited beta in August. For those who do not know about the feature, relevant Gmail conversations will appear in Google Search (as you can see in the image above). Just search “Paris” and emails that you have sent talking about “Paris” will then appear. If you think about it, expanded search makes a lot of sense.

Furthermore, the folks at Google announced this afternoon that Google Drive, Google Calendar and more will now appear when searching in Gmail:

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Google fixing spam from Google+ Events feature following complaints

When Google announced some updates to Google+ during its I/O keynote this week, perhaps apart from the new iPad compatible tablet version, the most talked about new feature was the Facebook-like invitations called “Events.” While Google calendar integration in the Events feature was supposed to be a big selling point, Google unfortunately did not provide users with control over which invites were added to their calendars. The issue led to massive amounts of spam in the form of notifications and calendar entries—most notably for Google+ users with large followings. Robert Scoble outlined the problem in a Google+ post:

Hey, +Vic Gundotra the way you rolled out the new Google+ events feature was — by far — the worst social launch ever… Not only did it spam the crap out of my notifications and my Google+ events page but it added events — hundreds of them — onto my calendar…My calendar is MINE. Not yours. You should NEVER put anything on it that I don’t approve of… I have turned down every event and they are still on my calendar so now I have to delete them one-by-one… By the way, I’ve been asking for noise controls since day one and you guys simply aren’t getting it. Amazingly bad service here folks.

As noted by Scoble, another avid Google+ user, Will Wheaton, highlighted the issue and received a response from Google’s Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra: Read more

Google Search iPhone app completely redesigned for speed and full screen searching

Google updated its Google Search iPhone app to version 2.0.0 today, which introduced a completely redesigned app that focuses on improvements to speed and full screen browsing features. Among the new features are an auto full screen mode that hides controls when scrolling down and reveals when scrolling up, and a new full-screen image search view.

The updated app also includes “major speed improvements,” a built-in text finder for webpages, and quick links to Gmail, Calendar, Docs, and search options such as images, places, and news. The iPad did not receive the same update, but both the iPhone and iPad will now be able to save images to the iOS camera roll.

A full list of features is below, while the updated app is available on the App Store now.

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