Weekly News Round-up: What You May Have Missed in the World of Android

Fantastic or exciting. That’s how I describe the Google I/O 2013 events I viewed. I wrote about my excitement with Google’s upgraded features. Yesterday, I got my invite to join the new Google Maps. Now I really wish that I had Chromebook Pixel because the maps would look great using a touch experience to navigate.

  • Google also introduced expansions to Google+ and a new service called Hangouts. The Hangouts feature isn’t new, just the redesign. Hangouts will also feature SMS integration (however that’s going to work and not be annoying), which should add a lot of out-of-the-office capabilities to Google+. There’s even an Easter egg someone found:

  • For more Easter eggs, check out this site. Also, Google Enterprise blog has a good summary of all of the new I/O 2013 announcements.
  • Ahead of I/O, Google also announced that all users would receive a storage bump to 15 GB across all services. This isn’t a stunningly significant amount of space, but certainly sweetens the pot for free cloud storage. Also, if you’re a Google Apps user, you’re going to see 30GB of space to share across all services. If you’re uploading photos, keep them under 2048px and there’s no storage cost. Also, documents, spreadsheets and slides don’t count towards your usage. I’m beginning to like Google Drive more and more for those things where I don’t care they enter the public sphere. I treat Drive the same as any other cloud storage solution: keep the stuff in there for as little time as necessary to accomplish the task.
  • Are you an AT&T subscriber and having trouble using Hangouts because they’re blocking the service? Check out this post for a workaround.
  • If you’re waiting for a new phone, you might want to hold on just a bit longer. Google announced a Google-branded Samsung Galaxy S4 device. This will be the first non-Nexus branded (still a Nexus, but not a Nexus – confusing, I know) device that will feature the newest Android OS. This will be an unlocked device and will retail for $649. The catch: it’s only going to work on AT&T or T-Mobile. I guess T-Mobile wouldn’t be that bad.
  • If you don’t want to drop $700, check out the Nexus 4 that is available in white, beginning June 10. The Nexus 4 will also have Android 4.3, which kinds of gives us a hint at when the new version of Jelly Bean will be available.
  • If you’re really reluctant to purchase a new tablet, you’ll be glad to wait. Apparently, someone outed the new Nexus 7 tablet in a Google Hangouts video.
  • Billing clients might be a little easier with this new Gmail feature:

  • Shortly after Larry Page made his “can’t we all just get a long plea” at I/O’s keynote, YouTube quietly sent a cease-and-desist letter to Microsoft over an unauthorized YouTube app for Windows Phone. The spat centered around allowing ads and protecting videos and copyrighted YouTube materials, and Microsoft complied.
  • If Eric Schmidt has his way (oh wait, he does) at Google, the “Don’t Be Evil” slogan is gone. In an interview with NPR’s Peter Sagal, Schmidt states that the slogan was “the stupidest rule ever” because “there’s no book about evil except maybe, you know, the Bible or something.” However, Schmidt goes on to describe a meeting where someone pounded their first and challenged an idea as evil and the conversation ended. The mantra apparently worked. This is a fascinating interview. You can download the audio interview (11 mins), or read the transcript.
  • I’m giving up on reviewing phones, since there’s a new one ever minute. Here’s a story about the new Galaxy Note 3. Check out my list of phones to buy today…which changes daily.
  • Like BlackBerry? Well, rejoice…sort of. BlackBerry Messenger is coming to Android. Unfortunately, the service won’t run on tablets though. Truthfully, I know next to nothing about BBM, except from a BB devotee who said, “it’s awesome.” But I don’t trust his advice because he’s still using a 3 inch screen and physical keyboard. Who does that? BBM is set to drop to Google Play sometime this summer.
  • Attorney at Work published the Evernote Guide for Lawyers eBook. I have Google Play Books, so I just uploaded my copy to the cloud. I’m actually really surprised no enterprising lawyer/consultant/marketing/SEO/time management guy or gal hasn’t produced this in a “one hour” format for the ABA. I need some credit for the idea, please.
  • Are you Canadian astronaut, Chris Hadfield? No, because you’re not this cool:

Have a fantastic upcoming week in your world of Android!

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Jeff Taylor

I’m just an ordinary guy living an extraordinary life. I’m also an attorney and I blog about Android for lawyers. You can follow me on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, or Google+.