Google Axes UDID Support

Google released an AdMob SDK for iOS developers today that completes its transition away from allowing apps access to Unique Device Identifiers, weeks before Apple's official deadline for retiring the system. UDIDs are the unique string of numbers that individually identifies each cellular device. Typically, they have been used by developers to track app installations across Apple's user base. Tracking users lets companies tailor advertising to each individual, but it also raises a host of privacy concerns.

Google Launches Maps Engine Lite

For years now, Google has offered its Google Maps Engine to enterprises that want to visualize their custom geospacial data. Starting today, anybody will be able to use a subset of this functionality, thanks to the launch of Google Maps Engine Lite (beta). This new tool, Google says, will allow any mapping enthusiast to “create and share robust custom maps using this powerful, easy-to-use tool.”

Google Launches its Keep Service

Google unveiled its rumored Keep service, giving users a new way to create and save notes and integrate them with Google Drive. The service is live both on the Web and in a new app for Android devices running on 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and above. With Keep you can quickly jot ideas down when you think of them and even include checklists and photos to keep track of what’s important to you. Your notes are safely stored in Google Drive and synced to all your devices so you can always have them at hand.

Google to Kill Off Google Reader

Google has announced that it will kill off its RSS reader application Google Reader as of July 1, 2013, citing a slowdown in usage since the service launched in 2005. Google Reader allows users to subscribe to content from their favorite news and blog sites from a unified web interface similar to an email inbox. The internet giant's senior vice president of Technical Infrastructure Urs Hölzle announced today that after eight years, the service will be brought to an end.

Android 4.0 and Above Eat Away at Gingerbread

Android's Gingerbread operating system has sticking power, but it's finally starting to loosen its hold. New numbers from Google show that nearly half of all Android devices are running versions of 4.0 and above - surpassing Gingerbread's individual installed base. Ice Cream Sandwich, 4.0, and Jelly Bean, 4.1 and 4.2, combined run on 45.1 percent of Android devices, according to numbers from the two week period ending on March 4. This is a 2.5 percent increase over last month.

Google Maps For iOS Gets First Big Update

Google yesterday pushed out its first update to its mapping software on Apple's iOS, adding a few new features. Chief among them is integration with a user's Google contact list, a feature that will pull up any addresses you have stored with Google, and not just on your phone. The update also adds a new option in the search menu that will quickly look for nearby points of interest, including restaurants, gas stations, movie theaters, and coffee shops. You could search for these things before, but the new menu means you don't actually have to type out the search.

Google Play Celebrates Its First Birthday

Ever wanted something specific from the Google Play store but didn't want to fork over the cash for it? Well, maybe this is the week to do it. Google announced yesterday that in honor of Google Play's first birthday, it was offering a week of deals and discounts in its media and app store. The Web giant is giving special deals on music, movies, books, magazines, TV shows, and games.

Google's Chromebook Pixel Elevates Chrome OS

In an attempt to satisfy cloud-computing power users, Google launched its Chromebook Pixel, a $1,299 laptop with a high-resolution touch screen that's now the flagship of the Chrome OS fleet. It is a 3.3-pound computer that brings a lot more polish to a product family that's been much more about low cost. Chrome OS runs Web apps in the browser rather than native apps written for traditional operating systems such as iOS or Windows, and the focus so far has been on consumer machines with a low sticker price and business machines that are cheap to manage.

9th Edition Of Google's Summer Of Code Program

As expected, Google will once again run its Summer of Code program for college students around the world this year. Students who make it into the competitive program get to work on open-source projects for mentoring organizations from around the globe. Over the past eight editions, 6,000 students from more than 100 countries participated in the program. Students will able to submit their applications starting April 22.

Google Glass Turns Up in FCC Filing

Google Glass took another step toward reality yesterday when its maker filed paperwork with the Federal Communications Commission laying out key technical specifications and certifying its compatibility with various standards. The documents are a routine part of bringing a new wireless device to the market. They describe a device augmented by a Broadcom 2.4GHz 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi radio and Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy.

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