Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Chromecast in Canada? There is hope!

Right now, you can't purchase Chromecast in Canada, and that usually means that Google won't get around to letting Canadians use it for years, or ever.  For example, Google Music, Google Voice, etc.

Well, even though I am from Canada, I went ahead and purchased a Chromecast on Amazon and had it shipped to an American address.  You will be happy to know that the product information pamphlet doesn't say anything about it not working in other countries.  More importantly, the last two pages are dedicated to information about how it is compliant with Industry Canada regulations.

Here is to hoping!

Just to make sure all you Canadians know -- Chromecast works excellent in Canada.. there are no regional restrictions once you have the device.  The only thing you need to worry about is getting one.  Oh, and it's freaking awesome!  Best $35 ever spent.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Google Glass vs. Smart Watches

Google Glass and Smart Watch technology are actually two different form factors that serve the same purpose.  The only difference between the two is that Google Glass takes pictures, and a smart watch likely won't (waiting for Samsung, Google and Apple for anything official of course).

When it comes to real-time, time-sensitive notifications, they both do the same thing.  It is easy to argue that the watch form factor is actually a lot more feasible, and could see greater adoption in the consumer market.

First, you have to wear Google Glass on your face.  You might as well get a Mike Tyson tattoo while you are at it.  Unless you are in the market for a face-mounted camera (which I guess some people might be), a watch makes more sense -- the only advantage Google Glass has is a camera.

The sheer number of important time-sensitive notifications that people get (not including email) is quite low, and doesn't warrant wearing something on your face all day long.  Even using "Google Now" can be embarrassing for some people -- since the low frequency of time-sensitive information people need makes one feel boring.  

So, if this "real-time, time-sensitive" device is only going to be actively used for around 3 minutes a day, something on your wrist that won't get the wearer accused of taking sneaky pictures when they actually aren't, and still really good at alerting you (by vibrating) seems like something most people would be quite comfortable with.

But do you need something like this at all?  Well, it's true that these types of notifications are also available on your phone, but with a watch, you don't have to worry about missing anything -- A buzz on your wrist is far more effective, and less annoying, than a buzz/ding in your pocket.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

iOS 7 LOOKS LIKE ANDROID (says Apple fanboys)

It's sad to see iOS 7 drop the ball so badly. From a design perspective, it's different -- but not in a good way. The design lacks purpose. Everyone was calling for Apple to change things up because it was getting boring. It's just that they changed it the wrong way.

 What people want is a fresh look (not like what they delivered -- something a lot more subtle), and some fresh functionality to bring them into the decade. Widgets, notifications that don't suck, and for developers, more access to API's that are currently private. Being a current iPhone user myself (I know, a Google fan using an iPhone, wha??), I am thrown back by all the comments iPhone developers are making in regards to it resembling Android.  Well, I don't know which version of android they are referring to, because there is absolutely no resemblance, aesthetically or functionally.

This is an interesting opportunity to see how iPhone users who haven't tried an Android device view it.

Monday, May 27, 2013

The easiest possible way to steal passwords from your friends using Google Chrome

Do your friends use Google Chrome?  Well, you are in luck!

If they have ever used that "remember password" feature in Google Chrome, you can get a list of sites they use, and all their passwords in just a couple clicks.  The good news is that Google has admitted that this is how it's intended to work, and does not consider this a problem.  They will not change how it works to protect you or your friends -- so go nuts.

Here's how you do it (in 15 seconds, without any special tools or skills required):

1) Open up their Google Chrome settings on your friends computer while they are getting a coffee

2) Click on the "Manage Passwords" link in the "Advanced / Passwords and Forms" section

3) You are done.  Click the "show" button on each password

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Apple B28 at iPad 3 event

we're in for a classic "one more thing" at this iPad 3 event and here's what we will see:

The iPod Nano has been going through some big changes recently.

And do you remember the new killer feature on iPhone 4s, Siri? Yep, it will be accessible through your nano -- which is also.... a watch!  Dick Tracy really isn't looking all that crazy anymore.

Of course, it will be Bluetooth enabled, and can communicate with your phone -- You can make phone calls from your wrist, read your text messages, check out your calendar, update your to-do list.  All of this without taking your phone out.  All your stuff is stored in the cloud -- so even if you don't have your phone with you, you're covered.  iCloud will take care of you.

"Send text to Johnny saying I will be late for lunch, so order without me"
** BLING ** New Text Message
beep beep boop -- you are reading or listening to your text message from your wrist or over your headphones that are connected to the phone in your pocket.

"Phone Johnny"
beep beep boop, you are now talking to Johnny over your headphones that are plugged into the phone in your pocket.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Nexus Tablet coming around Google I/O 2012

Eric Schmidt let it slip that they are working on their own Nexus-ish tablet that will be in production around 6 months from now.  That timing is very interesting, as it's just before Google I/O 2012.

What could that mean?  This year's event may end up being tablet-heavy -- trying really hard to get developers on board with Tablet development.  Google needs developers to build apps for Android tablets if they expect to compete with Apple's iPad.

If this is all true, it wouldn't be hard to imagine that Google will be giving all 5000ish developers attending the conference a "Nexus tablet".  Thankfully,  registration this year will include a sort of "CAPTCHA" that is designed to weed out scalpers and non-developers who register just for free gear.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Google Music found in Marketplace Code

Google is preparing for the launch of Google Music -- not that that's breaking news. What hasn't been talked about yet is the references to it in the marketplace code. There is also references to "OCEAN_BOOKS" (probably just books) and "YOUTUBE_VIDEO" (movie/tv rentals?).

I also noticed the URL of the marketplace redirects to http://market.android.com/apps/ when you go to the main page -- and going to http://market.android.com/music/ or /books/ doesn't give you an error like /charliesheen/ does.

Stay tuned!

What if Google Music worked on iPhone?

I just realized today that it would be completely possible for the coming Google Music service to run on iPhone. This hypothetical app would hook up to your media locker in the cloud, allowing you to download or stream music you are storing there. Now the only question is whether or not Apple would allow it.

If by some miracle Apple let Google Music into their App Store, it could get very interesting indeed.