Google Archives — Page 4 of 8


Crowdsourced, accurate maps

Posted on January 14, 2012  /  1 Comments

The World Bank – Google collaboration seems a brilliant idea; key to its success is how national government react. But if even some cooperate . . . .
We’ve been thinking about the potential of big data (large, continuing streams of computer-readable data) for development applications. There is nothing about development in the marketing campaign below, but can any zealous privacy advocate identify a problem with it? A mobile campaign by Blue Chip Marketing Worldwide, which is based in Chicago, places the ads for the thermometer within popular apps like Pandora that collect basic details about users, including their sex and whether they are parents, and can pinpoint specific demographics to receive ads. But not all mothers will see the ad on their smartphones. Rather, the ads will be sent only to devices that, according to Google, are in regions experiencing a high incidence of flu.

Full e commerce, courtesy of Google

Posted on December 2, 2011  /  0 Comments

In our work on mobile more than voice services in 2008-10, we pointed to the need for delivery services, if e commerce was to catch in emerging Asia. Google is offering to close the gap, for consumers and retailers in the US. Who will close the gap in Asia? In another foray into commerce, Google is working on a delivery service that would let people order items from local stores on the Web and receive them at their homes or offices within a day. The service is in an early testing phase, and it was described by three people briefed on the project who were not authorized to speak about it publicly before it was announced.
Google sees mobiles as the future, especially in markets like India, according to Business Standard. Mobile Internet fastest growing vertical, says Google India MD. Listing a set of next big trends in the overall technology sector, Google India says mobile Internet is set to lead the way for the industry. As against 14 per cent in the US, 11 per cent in Russia, and 6 per cent in the UK, Google India sees about 40 per cent search queries from mobile phones in the country. “Mobile phones are the future.

Power of the default

Posted on October 16, 2011  /  0 Comments

Behavioral economics is becoming a major component of LIRNEasia’s toolkit. The discussion below refers to the decision architectures that appear to keep the money flowing into Google. But most people, of course, never make that single click. Defaults win. The role of defaults in steering decisions is by no means confined to the online world.

Google to foster innovation in Egypt

Posted on September 29, 2011  /  0 Comments

Perhaps the program should have been named for Wael Ghonim. A bus branded with the Google logo will be traveling across 10 governorates in Egypt starting this week, including stops at universities in Cairo and Alexandria, scouting for the next generation of technology entrepreneurs with homegrown ideas on the scale of Facebook or LinkedIn. “We will put someone’s dream through a seven-month crash course that will help turn it into a commercially viable business,” said Wael Fakharany, Google’s manager in Egypt. “We have been working on this concept for nine months. We had signed a contract with the Egyptian government in 2009 to invest in the country’s Internet ecosystem and this is part of that commitment.

Good Google? Bad Google?

Posted on September 22, 2011  /  2 Comments

My entry to telecom policy and regulation was through the AT&T Divestiture case, where the US Department of Justice broke up the world’s largest company with my advisor, Bill Melody, as a key witness. The good guys and the bad guys were clear. While I was teaching the big Microsoft antitrust case came up and Lessig was appointed as Master to assist the judge. The lines were not as clear, but I could see the leveraging of the operation system being problematic. Google’s case is much harder to take a position on.

All Google searches use up 260 MW

Posted on September 9, 2011  /  0 Comments

Even countries like Sri Lanka have 300 MW energy plants. The power generated by Bhutan’s Tala dam is more than 1000 MW. Looks like the data centers are more efficient than we thought. I’ve had little time for people who criticize energy use of web search. Earlier writing was without too much data, because data was not available.
Everyone has got an opinion on Google’s takeover of Motorola Mobility. But according to a report, it has the blessings of Martin Cooper, the man who invented the mobile phone. We had one post on him, but given all the effort we devote to mobile phones, that surely is not enough. One link led to another and then to a very nice piece that not only tells about Martin Cooper, but also locates the equipment that made the first mobile call possible.

The plates move in the post-PC world

Posted on August 16, 2011  /  0 Comments

It’s nice to know we’re in the post-PC world. It’s just two years since we were being asked to participate in debates about mobile vs PCs. And just one year since Steve Jobs called the PC a truck. Now the debate has shifted. We know what world we live in.
Part of an ongoing discussion at LIRNEasia is the tipping point from the operator-centric world of feature phones (intelligence in the center) to the operating-system-centric world of smartphones (intelligence at the edges). In the developed economies, lots of people assume the tipping point has been crossed. But the operators have not seen their “obituaries,” and seem to be working on immortality pills, in the shape of Blackberries: While the carriers do not openly talk about the threat of Apple and Google, analysts say the two companies have fostered a system that could make carriers slow-growing utilities selling little more than generic network access. The revenue from apps, which provide entertainment, news and other services, do not flow to the carriers. In an apparent bid to exploit those concerns, RIM has repeatedly told carriers that, unlike Apple, it believes that they deserve a portion of revenues from its apps store and as well as future services.
A New York Times columnist writes about the possible use of ICTs to counter violent extremism. Not your father’s kind of public diplomacy. Being done by Google, not by a unit with Department of State. I don’t think the world’s leaders have begun to grasp the implications of unstoppable connectivity. Some people are calling this the Age of Behavior: What I do affects what you do, more directly than ever before.
David Pogue, my favorite writer on gadgets has reviewed the first laptop made specifically for cloud computing: no hard disk, no software. Just the cloud. And the verdict is . . .

Google to offer payment by phone

Posted on May 25, 2011  /  0 Comments

We thought the emerging economies would be first past the post on this one, but it appears that the difficulties of navigating the regulatory delays and uncertainties have eroded the lead. Google will offer mobile payments with MasterCard and Citibank, according to one of the people, as well as with cellphone carriers, hardware manufacturers and retailers. Initially, the mobile wallets will be available only on Google’s Nexus S phone and will use a Citibank-issued MasterCard credit card number and a virtual Google MasterCard prepaid card. Full story.
We do not believe in the killer app. Multiple apps is what we think will drive mobile broadband. But if there be a killer, it will probably be search, as this NYT article suggests: Today, Google says mobile searches are growing as quickly as Web searches were at the same stage in the company’s early days, and they are up sixfold in the last two years. Google has a market share of 97 percent for mobile searches, according to StatCounter, which tracks Web use. Now that it dominates the field, Google is throwing its burly computing power and heaps of data at new problems specific to mobile phones — like translating phone calls on the fly and recognizing photos of things like plants and items of clothing But it search reinvented, not the same old, same old.
Tp provide location-based services, companies will need maps that will describe relations between shops, people and places. Both Google and Apple are collecting this information, using software embedded in the handsets. Google and Apple use this data to improve the accuracy of everything on the phone that uses location. That includes maps and navigation services, but also advertising aimed at people in a particular spot — a potentially huge business that is just getting off the ground. In fact, the information has become so valuable that the companies have been willing to push the envelope on privacy to collect it.