21 April 2016

Chrome Extension for Google Keep


It looks there's an internal competition inside Google for creating Chrome extensions that save links. After "Save to Google" and "Save to Inbox", there's now a Chrome extension for Google Keep that lets you create notes about the page you're currently visiting. "The next time you're on a website that you want to remember or reference later on, use the new Keep Chrome extension to add it — or any part of it — to a note in Keep. Just click the Keep badge to add a site's link to a note, or select some text or an image and create a new note from the right-click menu," suggests Google.


You can also create notes in Android if you use the sharing feature from your favorite browser and pick Google Keep.

Another useful feature in Google Keep: you can now add labels to your notes as #hashtags. For example, you can write: "#work #todo #readlater" and Google Keep will add 3 labels to your note. The nice thing is that Google Keep uses autocomplete, so you can quickly select an existing label. If the label doesn't exist, you need to click the "create" option and the hashtag will become a link.



{ Thanks, Allan Medeiros de Azevedo. }

Save Links to Google Inbox


Google Inbox has a new bundle called "saved". When you click it, you get this description: "Don't forget the articles, videos and other links you want to get back to. Use the Inbox Chrome extension or mobile share button to add links here."

The Inbox Chrome extension has been launched today and it's only useful for saving links and sharing pages via email.



Now you no longer have to send yourself messages with links to pages you want to read later. The links are added to the inbox and they're also saved as reminders. It's strange that you can't add links from the Google Inbox interface and you have to use a Chrome extension or the share feature from Android.

Another interesting feature groups the messages related to a Google Calendar event. "Inbox now gathers emails from a single event together and shows you what's changed at a glance. When you tap on an event, you'll see a comprehensive overview, all in one place," informs Gmail's blog.


Inbox has a new interface for newsletters, which highlights the articles, so you can open them faster. Apparently, the new interface is only displayed for newsletters you read often and it also includes a preview that's hidden after you've opened the newsletter.


{ Thanks, Allan Medeiros de Azevedo. }

19 April 2016

YouTube Adds 360-Degree Live Streams Spatial Audio


YouTube gets closer to virtual reality. Last year, it added support for 360-degree videos and now it supports 360-degree live streaming. "And after years of live streaming Coachella for fans around the world who can't attend the festival, this year we're bringing you the festival like never before by live streaming select artist performances in 360 degrees this weekend," mentions YouTube's blog.

The new interactive live streaming feature will be especially useful for concerts, news and sport events. You can better understand what happens there by customizing your viewing experience and changing your perspective.



YouTube also added support for spacial audio, but only for on-demand YouTube videos (not for live streams). "Just as watching a concert in 360 degrees can give you an unmatched immersive experience, spatial audio allows you to listen along as you do in real life, where depth, distance and intensity all play a role," informs YouTube. There's a playlist of 6 immersive videos with spatial audio. "Enjoy these 360° and VR videos with spatial audio on Android devices. Spatial audio lets you listen to audio from all directions just as in real world. Put on headphones for the best listening experience," suggests the description of the playlist.

Podcasts in Google Play Music


Google Play Music is no longer only about music, now it also lets you listen to podcasts. The podcasts section is already available in the web interface and it's rolling out to the Android app in the US and Canada.

"We'll connect you with podcasts based on what you're doing, how you're feeling and what you're interested in. Similar to our contextual playlists for music, we want to make it easy to find the right podcast - whether you're a podcast aficionado or listening for the first time," informs Google.

Here are some podcasts that are available: "Freakonomics Radio", "The Nerdist", "Radiolab", "Stuff You Should Know", "TED Radio Hour", "This Week in Tech", "WTF with Marc Maron", "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!".




When you subscribe to a podcast, the Android app will automatically download the most recent episodes or notify you when there's a new episode.


Google's Package Tracking Card


Google Search has a new card for tracking packages. Google has always displayed a package tracking link when searching for a tracking code from UPS, USPS, FedEx and other carriers, but now you can search for [track package] and enter the tracking number. Click "Find carrier" and Google shows a link like "Track via UPS" or "Track via FedEx". If Google can't find a carrier, it will show this message: "Can't match this number to a carrier".



The same card is also displayed when you search for the tracking number.

Another option to track your parcels is to search for [my packages], [my purchases] or [my orders] and Google will show a summary of your orders, including the tracking links, but only if they're available in the confirmation emails. When you search for [track my packages], [track my purchases] or [track my orders], Google also expands the most recent order.