Chromecast Adds WatchESPN, Major League Soccer, and Google+ Photos

Your Chromecast just became the ultimate hub for watching all things World Cup. Thanks to a new update to the WatchESPN app, you can now cast anything streamed through ESPN’s live streaming sports app to your TV, which includes all 64 World Cup games. That also includes the NBA Finals (which kick off Thursday) and the X Games.

Not interested in ESPN? What about Major League Soccer? MLS Matchday and MLS LIVE now have Chromecast support as well.

Finally, Google is giving Google+ some Chromecast live by now allowing you to cast photos and videos from G+ apps on iOS and Android.  (more…)

PushBullet Opens Beta Testing for Google+ Community Members and Updates Desktop Notifications

When Google announced that community pages for Android apps in the Play Store would allow members to take part in beta testing new features for apps, people who like to live on the cutting-edge everywhere rejoiced. Those same pioneers are likely fans of PushBullet’s cross-platform notification system. Luckily for them, PushBullet has opened up beta testing to the public and now has a few new features that need testing.  (more…)

Google+ for Android Introduces 9 New Features, Like Auto Awesome Stories and Movies (Updated)

New leader of all things Google+, Dave Besbris, posted a list of nine new things we should expect to see in the Google+ for Android app once an update is pushed live through Google Play today. Nine is a pretty big number for an app like this. Are any of them useful? They certainly sound like they are.

New Auto Awesome Stories and Movies a part of the update. As announced by Google this morning, Stories and Movies are ways for you to view travelogues of your best photos (Stories) or highlight videos of them, with effects, transitions, and soundtracks (Movies). You can read more about Stories and Movies here(more…)

Google+ is Completely Missing From Google I/O 2014 (Updated: So Far?)

Remember the story that surfaced shortly after Google+ head Vic Gundotra announced that he was leaving Google – you know, the one about Google dialing back Google+ and reducing its importance? Actually, I think the report stated that the service was close to being dead, something Google “vehemently” denied. Well, take it for what it’s worth, but the Google I/O 2014 schedule fails to mention the social network at all. As in, doesn’t mention it once, nor is it even listed as a potential topic to be discussed. Google+ is apparently not a part of Google’s developer conference.  (more…)

Report: Google+ to be Dialed Back, Fate Unknown, Hangouts Team Moving to Android

The minute Vic Gundotra informed the world that he was leaving Google after eight years, the first thing most of us asked was, “What does this mean for his baby, Google+?” That question remains unanswered at this point, but a report out of TechCrunch gives off the impression that Google is viewing Google+ quite differently today than it did only a few months ago. Sources of TC would’t go as far as calling the social network “officially dead,” but did hint at its importance being drastically reduced.  (more…)

Vic Gundotra Leaves Google

Vic Gundotra, VP at Google and master of all things Google+, announced today that he is leaving the company after 8 years. Gundotra announced the move himself in a post on Google+, stating that it is “time for a new journey,” although, he also mentioned that now isn’t the “day to talk about” specifics of that. Instead, Gundotra wants to celebrate his past 8 years with the people he worked with at Google.  (more…)

LG G2 on AT&T Receiving Update to Fix Google Wallet Tap & Pay Issues

For whatever reason, the Kit Kat update for the LG G2 on AT&T left out Android 4.4’s Tap & Pay settings menu, even though the device should have no problem using Host Card Emulation to make mobile payments. There are work-arounds, for sure, but most involve sideloading hacked Google Wallet apks or flashing a custom ROM. For those who were expecting the functionality out of the gate, life has been a bit frustrating.

Things are changing today, thanks to an update that AT&T is pushing to the G2. The changelog is minimal, but does say specifically that it involves “updates to Google+ and Google Wallet.” At least one reader has already confirmed that Tap & Pay is now working. (more…)

SwiftKey Update Brings Google+, Evernote Personalization

If you use SwiftKey and are as horrible a touch typist as I am, you’ll be extremely pleased to hear that the makers of the venerable third-party keyboard for Android are rolling out features to improve typing predictions and autocorrect.

Updated personalization options within SwiftKey version 4.4.5 allow the app to collect typographical data from Google+ public posts and Evernote archives, much in the same way as Google’s most recent Keyboard release. The app goes one step further for owners of iOS devices; if you have SwiftKey Note connected to Evernote, the app will now also glean typographical information from that. (more…)