Google will now recommend Music, TV And Movie Content in Mobile Search

Google Android Search

Google is rolling out a new update to mobile users and is putting a greater emphasis on music and media, including recommendations on songs, TV shows, movies, and more. Now, when searching for things like singers, actors, films and other related items, Google will return enhanced results that provide information like lyrics, covers, or song recommendations for music searches, as well as details on past and current TV episodes, information about  the cast, movie showtimes and other items.

To some extent, Google was already offering this information in Google Search previously. For example, it introduced song lyrics around a year ago, pointing web searchers to lyrics from Google Play that appeared as cards just above Google’s search results.

However, with the update, this information has more structure.

google-singer-search-mobile

Here’s how: A simple search for a singer takes you to a new interface where you can navigate through tabs that offer you an overview of their work, songs, albums, and upcoming events. You can even listen to their music via YouTube, Spotify, Google Play Music, and iHeartRadio as shown in the GIF above.

A similar experience is available for actors, film and TV content. When introducing the update via its blog post, Google even suggests you could use this feature for the same reason that users would otherwise turn to a site like IMDb, saying: “maybe you’re watching a TV show and can’t remember where you’ve seen that actor before?”

The update is currently available only to mobile users on Android phones and tablets, but Google says it will arrive for iOS users in the near future.

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Google’s 10 most popular Halloween costume searches 2015

halloween-pics

When it comes to Halloween costumes in 2015, the typical vampire or clown costume just won’t do.

Superheroes, who dominate movies and TV, remain popular, but a villain is the most sought-out costume of all, according to Google Trends’ Frightgeist.

The top costume search is “Suicide Squad” character Harley Quinn, according to the site, which measures Google queries locally and nationally.

The character, played by Margot Robbie in the upcoming film, has been popular for decades at fan conventions (her first appearance was on “Batman: The Animated Series” in 1992, before breaking into comics).

Robbie’s memorable performance in the trailer for the movie seems to have made Harley — the on-and-off girlfriend of The Joker — surge to the top.

The Joker also ranks in the top 10 costumes, along with his foe Batman, Wonder Woman and the generic term “superhero.”

As much as people are anticipating “Suicide Squad,” the excitement around “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is off the charts. It’s no wonder that “Star Wars” is the No. 2 search, hot on Harley’s heels.

The minions from “Despicable Me” are big with kids, and the old standbys pirates and witches also made the top 10.

Top Google Trends’ Frightgeist national searches:

1. Harley Quinn (Shown Above in case you never heard of her)

2. Star Wars

3. Superhero

4. Pirate

5. Batman

6. Minnie Mouse

7. Witch

8. Minions

9. Joker

10. Wonder Woman

Source

Google is losing ground as rival Search Engines grow!

Google Doodle

Soon, we might “Bing” for information rather than Google it. The latter’s dominance of the search engine market is being reduced, with its share of the market falling the most since 2009.

Much of the traffic is being taken from Yahoo, which has seen its highest share for five years, according to new data from StatCounter. But Bing is still bigger than Yahoo, with 12.5% of searches.

Google-Search-3.0-for-iOS-app-icon-smallGoogle still has a huge dominance of the market, with 77.3% of searches in November. But that fell to 75.2% in December, its lowest since StatCounter started tracking search statistics in July 2008.

Much of that drop was driven by Yahoo’s new partnership with Mozilla, StatCounter said. In November Mozilla said that it would use Yahoo as the default search in its browser rather than Google.

“The move by Mozilla has had a definite impact on US search,” commented Aodhan Cullen, CEO, StatCounter. “The question now is whether Firefox users switch back to Google.”

Firefox users represented just over 12% of internet usage in the US, according to Statcounter.

Apple iPad crowned as “Most Satisfying Tablet in 2013” and “Google Now” Comes to iOS

Apple’s iPad ranked first in the list with a score of 836 over a total possible score of 1,000 points. The study questioned tablet owners on five categories. These include performance, ease of use, styling and design, features, and cost.

Apple’s iPad scored high on the first four categories. On the other hand, Amazon’s tablets excelled in the cost category, scoring an overall score of 829 points out of 1,000. Other tablet manufacturers such as Samsung, Asus, and Acer followed close behind in the list, though their scores were all below the study average of 828 points.

The results of the study indicate that tablet owners are less likely to add or replace their units anytime soon. Last year, 37 percent of tablet owners stated they intended to purchase a new unit in the coming year. In the 2013 survey only 27 per cent declared they still intended to buy a new tablet within the year.

JD Power research

The research revealed that consumer satisfaction is higher when the tablet unit is a communal device. In the study, sole users scored 28 points lower in satisfaction compared to those who shared a tablet between four or more people. This leads to the suggestion that group satisfaction may have a significant effect on subsequent purchases and brand loyalty.

Google’s iOS Search app, now with Google Now

Google-Now-iOS-teaser-001

Boom, just like that Google has issued an update to its excellent Search app for the iPhone and iPad which enables some of the most popular Google Now features on the iOS platform. At least initially, Google Now on iOS devices doesn’t support some of the features Android users have come to love.

Boarding passes, activity summary, events, concerts, Fandango and Zillow cards aren’t included in the update.

All told, 22 of the 29 card types found in Android have made their way to the iOS edition, including weather, traffic, transit schedules and sports scores. Also: Google Now doesn’t have Push Notifications, which makes the feature less useful than on Android, where Google Now can notify users via alerts of their upcoming appointments, changes to their flight schedule, weather and more.

Your promotional video, screenies and additional details are after the break…

The overall look and feel of Google Now on iOS is virtually indistinguishable from its Android counterpart.

However, Google Now on Android is more seamless due to its integration with Google’s mobile operating system, which includes accessing Google Now anywhere with an upward swipe, but also live-updating home and Locks screen widgets which, of course, are not supported on iOS.

Google Now Cards missing from the iOS build: airline boarding passes, activity summary, events, Zillow, Fandango, concerts, research topic, nearby events.

According to AllThingsD, we should expect upcoming new Google Now Cards on Android first, “and then see them added to iOS later.”

Google-Search-3.0-for-iOS-iPhone-screenshot-001 Google-Search-3.0-for-iOS-iPhone-screenshot-002

To refresh your cards, just swipe up. You must be signed in to the Search app with your Google Account to use Now features.

Google’s blog post reads:

Google Now is about giving you just the right information at just the right time. It can show you the day’s weather as you get dressed in the morning, or alert you that there’s heavy traffic between you and your butterfly-inducing date-so you’d better leave now!

It can also share news updates on a story you’ve been following, remind you to leave for the airport so you can make your flight and much more. There’s no digging required: cards appear at the moment you need them most-and the more you use Google Now, the more you get out of it.

Here’s a promo clip.

The app icon has also been slightly tweaked.

Google-Search-3.0-for-iOS-app-icon-small

From release notes:

• get just the right information at just the right time with Google Now.
• weather and traffic conditions before you start your day
• updates on your favorite sports teams and breaking news stories as they happen

Google Maps for iOS finally arrives, includes: voice, turn-by-turn, StreetView and developer SDK

maps 730x308 Google Maps for iOS finally arrives; includes voice, turn by turn, StreetView and developer SDK

As expected, the official Google Maps app has landed in the App Store this evening. The release comes following a number of rumors, which have been circulating since the summer when it was announced that Apple would be replacing Google Maps in iOS with its own in-house solution.

The app works on the iPhone and iPod touch (no iPad version yet), and includes a number of features such as voice-guided turn-by-turn directions, Google’s exclusive Street View, which allows you to look at locations from street level, and public transit directions. More details after the fold…

From Google’s release notes:

“Navigate your world with Google Maps, now available for iPhone. Get comprehensive, accurate and easy-to-use maps with built-in Google local search, voice guided turn-by-turn navigation, public transit directions, Street View and more. Use Google Maps to discover great places to eat, drink, shop and play, with ratings and reviews from people you trust. Sign in to save your favorite places and quickly access all your past searches and directions from your computer, right on your phone.

Search
* Find addresses, places and businesses around the world with Google local search.
* Discover places to eat, drink, shop and play, with ratings and local reviews.
* Sign in to sync your searches, directions, and favorite places between your computer and your phone.

Directions
* Get voice guided, turn-by-turn driving directions.
* Find your way by train, bus, subway or walking directions.
* Access live traffic information in cities across the world.

Street View and imagery
* View 360-degree panoramas of places around the globe with Street View.
* See inside more than 100,000 businesses worldwide.
* View high resolution satellite imagery of locations around the world.

Simple and easy to use
* An entirely new Google Maps experience on your iPhone.
* Newly designed and streamlined interface for even easier navigation of your world.
* Use gestures to explore the map and browse results.”


After giving it a brief once-over, I have to say that the app looks pretty good — far better than Nokia’s weak attempt we saw last month. Map tiles load very quickly, and everything about the app feels smooth, including Street View. And location data is great because, well, it’s Google.

Timing couldn’t be better for Google, as the criticism continues for Apple’s Maps app. Released in September, the in-house mapping software has been nothing but trouble for Apple, resulting in a public apology, multiple executive oustings, and even a public police warning in Australia.

For the moment, I’m impressed. But we’ll be taking a deeper look at the new app over the next several hours and will return with our thoughts. In the meantime, if you want to check it out for yourself (and it’s definitely worth a look), you can find Google Maps in the App Storefor free.