Huge news day today, with Google's I/O presentation packing about a day's worth of news into a single hourlong presentation--and this is just the first day. We wonder whether Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich, and Chrome OS can exist in the same world, and whether the music labels will ever again get a seat at the table. Plus, why Microsoft bought Skype, cellphones getting disaster notification texts, and the New Yorker comes to the iPad. --MollySubscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
Google's long-awaited cloud music service has arrived. It's called Music Beta; it's free (for now, and currently invite-only); and after giving it a test-drive, I'm happy to report that the whole system is fairly smooth.
From the perspective of the end-user, the payoff of Music Beta is to have your entire music collection in the cloud, available to stream instantly from any browser or Android-based device (phone, tablet, Google TV). Out of the box, a new Android smartphone or tablet can tap into your music collection within minutes, with no computer syncing required. That's pretty … Read more
Google is preparing to launch a test version of a new digital music service that will enable users to upload their music libraries to the company's servers.
CNET reported in March that Google was testing its music service internally and was ready to unveil the long-anticipated service. And that is what Google intends to do tomorrow at the company's I/O Developer Conference in San Francisco, according to Zahavah Levine, one of the executives in charge of getting the music service off the ground.
While Google and Levine have been negotiating to obtain licenses from the four largest … Read more
Only a week after Google upgraded the stable version of Chrome to 11, the company bumped its beta users to version 12 beta last night. Google Chrome 12 beta (download for Windows | Mac | Linux) pushed a moderate range of under-the-hood improvements to Chrome beta users, including better hardware acceleration, stronger privacy controls, and slightly safer file downloads. It also killed support for Google Gears, a move the company announced back in March.
A significant update to the Opera browser's Speed Dial feature launched today in Opera 11.50 alpha (download), along with Opera Next, which includes a mechanism that makes it easier for Opera fans to automatically download under-construction builds of the browser. Opera Next will install separately and alongside the "stable" release of Opera, sporting a silver Opera logo much like Google Chrome Canary is visually distinct from the other versions of Chrome with its all-yellow icon.
The new version of Speed Dial introduces support for Speed Dial-specific extensions. Originally developed by Opera, and now in use in … Read more
Links from Wednesday's episode of Loaded:
Sony has made its last PSP Go and shall make no more
T-Mobile launches an app that lets you make voice calls through Facebook
Facebook is expanding its social reporting system for users to report harassment
Google opens Map Maker to Americans
AT&T closes shop on its local listing site, Buzz.com
A robot will throw the opening pitch at the Phillies game today
Microsoft has opened the tap on its cloud-based Office 365 and is now offering the service as a public beta for anyone to try out.
Available in 38 countries and in 17 languages, the new beta follows several months of limited testing among a couple thousand businesses that were able to kick the tires on the service. After the public beta, Office 365 will officially launch later this year.
Unveiled last October, Office 365 is Microsoft's attempt to offer businesses a cloud-based alternative to some of its traditional desktop and server products. The service combines Office Web Apps with … Read more
New Norton betas include the ability to rate a download's stability based on the file behavior on the computers of other Norton users and full Google Chrome support, setting the tone for the premium security suite updates due later this year.
Released today by Symantec, Norton Internet Security 2012 beta (download) and Norton AntiVirus 2012 beta (download) also include a new start-up manager that debuted earlier this year in Norton 360, changes to Symantec's SONAR technology, and a new autofix feature for curing installation woes quickly.
The changes are not ground-breaking, but do appear to be able to … Read more
Somewhere between a nightly and a beta lies Firefox Aurora, Mozilla's first public browser under its new publishing schedule. Announced yesterday, Firefox Aurora for Windows (download), Mac (download), and Linux (download), is most analogous to the intent behind the Google Chrome developer's channel (download Windows | Mac | Linux): to provide a place where users who don't mind browser instability can test out new features, and contribute feedback to the developers.
Images from a pre-beta version of Windows 8 reveal that Microsoft is apparently expanding its use of the ribbon interface to replace traditional pull-down menus and toolbars.
Following Microsoft's release of the latest pre-beta build of Windows 8 to select partners recently, screenshots of certain features in the upcoming OS were allegedly posted online. In particular, images displayed on enthusiast site Within Windows by "Windows 8 Secrets" co-authors Rafael Rivera and Paul Thurrott show the ribbon interface reaching Windows Explorer.
Introduced with Office 2007, the ribbon interface has been loved by some and reviled by others. But … Read more