New Google Photo Stories Showing Up in Google Now

Folks who utilize Google Photo’s auto backup will begin to see new Stories pop up directly through Google Now. To explain, if you take enough photos at any given time, Google will throw those photos into a Story, then put music and effects to it. Moving forward, these Stories will appear in Google Now for easy access, where as before, you would receive a notification through the Google Photos app.  (more…)

You Can Finally “Send a Hangouts Message” With Your Voice in Google Now

That title isn’t clickbait. I’m not even kidding with this one. You can say “send a Hangouts message” in Google Now, with your voice, and it will actually send a message in Hangouts with your voice. I don’t know when this went live, but it’s live. It will ask who you want to send it to, then what your message is, before confirming that you want to send. We aren’t talking SMS here – this is legitimate Hangouts messaging with your voice.

You still think I’m joking, I know. I get why you would think that I’m joking. Seriously, though, go try it.

You can finally send a Hangouts message with your voice in Google Now.  (more…)

Smartwatches Aren’t Smart Enough

Smartwatches are back in the news again thanks to Apple’s latest event, and it has me thinking about a topic that I am tired of thinking about. It’s not necessarily that I don’t want a smartwatch or that I can’t see their prospective usefulness, but rather, much of the press seems to be going through the motions of gazing out at the distant future and hoping it appears on the latest wearable.

Almost everyone seems to agree that Apple failed to provide a story for the product, or the ideal reason why we should want an Apple Watch, which has led to some people remaining skeptical until they try it and others waxing on about how it, unlike Android Wear, is going to change everything. It’s that second group that I’m growing weary of. I keep hearing stories about how the Apple Watch is going to save so much time, and how it will enable us to be more personable since we won’t be looking at our phones anymore, and how it will remove friction from our lives when we use our watch for everything.

Are smartwatches really the thing that will make us better conversationalists, use our phone less, and get more work done? Let’s take a look at some of the promises we have been hearing about smartwatches and examine just how viable they are. (more…)

3rd Party App Cards Starting to Show Up in Google Now

At the end of January, Google announced that we would all soon start seeing 3rd party app cards appear in Google Now, a move that has the potential to make the service exponentially more useful, assuming you aren’t spammed to death and have enough control over each’s arrival. While I personally have not see any new 3rd party app cards, at least one of our readers started seeing them today.  (more…)

Toggle Your System Settings With Google Search Voice Commands

Using our voice to control a smartphone and tablet is a real treat, especially when considering how fast our mobile devices have evolved over the past few years. More specifically, Google Search and Google’s Voice Commands is evolving, and thanks to Lollipop, users can now toggle system settings (WiFi, Bluetooth, Flashlight) with nothing but their voice.  (more…)