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Technology 

Google’s Firebase taps serverless Cloud Functions

Firebase, Google Cloud’s back end and SDK for mobile and web application development, is being enhanced with serverless compute capabilities. Google Cloud Functions for Firebase, now available in a beta release, allows developers to run back-end JavaScript code that responds to events triggered by Firebase features and HTTPS requests. Developers upload their code to Google’s cloud, and the functions are run in a managed Node.js environment. There is no need for users to manage or scale their own servers. “[Cloud Functions] enables true server-less development,” Google’s Ben Galbraith said. Like AWS Lambda…

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Android 

When it stops being about the hardware: Google’s way forward and an all-new kind of cloud

The screen in front of you is now just the vessel for Google services. It’s been noted several times and with many words that Google didn’t announce any hardware at Google I/O 2017. Never mind that we actually did talk of stand-alone Daydream devices and new Android Auto partners, the internet wants to hear about phones! All the phones! Google started as a software services company and things have come full circle. What we did hear tells us that to Google, phones no longer matter. Google is moving forward in…

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Android 

Google’s Daydream strategy is getting the right kind of attention

Google is focused on a moving target in ways no other company seems prepared for right now. VR and AR got prime-time Keynote energy at Google I/O, as well as a separate keynote the next day with heaps of extra details. And as cool as it is to see a new UI coming to Daydream or the “VPS” system in Tango being used in Lowe’s stores later this year, the big news from I/O was neither of these things. It’s the reaction from VR developers already embedded in the ecosystem…

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Technology 

Google’s Polymer zeroes in on ES6 compatibility, interoperability

Polymer, Google’s open source JavaScript library for building reusable HTML elements, has graduated to version 2.0, a major revision that improves the data system, interoperability with other web libraries and frameworks, and support for ECMAScript 6 standards. ECMAScript is the official specification underlying JavaScript and implemented in web browsers. Arriving nearly two years after Polymer 1.0, the 2.0 release complies with HTML custom elements v1, for creating new HTML tags, and shadow DOM v1, for self-contained web components. Developers can now draw on Polymer APIs associated with both specifications. Polymer 2.0…

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Android 

LG ‘V30’ will support Google’s Daydream VR: One big, important clue

For starters, LG’s next flagship will probably use an OLED screen. At the Google I/O 2017 keynote presentation, Google let slip (well, it was surely intentional) an important clue about an unannounced Android phone. In addition to confirming that the Galaxy S8 and S8+ will get Daydream support via a software update later this year, Google’s Clay Bavor told attendees that LG’s next flagship phone would also be Daydream ready. Since we’ve already seen the flagship LG G6 this year, that sure sounds a lot like the LG V20‘s successor….

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Android 

Google’s ‘Find My Device’ app is the next-gen Android Device Manager

Android Device Manager is now Find My Device, and it has a few new features to keep it useful and relevant. One of the less publicized announcements at Google I/O was the rebranding of the popular Android Device Manager — the app that allows you to find or reset a lost or stolen phone — to Find My Device, with a new design and some additional features. The fundamentals of the app haven’t changed — you still use it to look up the current location, or last GPS location, of…

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Android 

Google’s Play Console Dashboards help developers pinpoint problems with their apps

Google is helping developers get a better grip on problems with their apps thanks to new Play Console Dashboards. Launched on stage at Google I/O 2017, Play Console Dashboards essentially provide developers with the vital signs of their apps, helping to pinpoint problems with specific analytics. Play Console Dashboards pinpoint six issues that cause battery drain, crashes, and slow UI, Google says. Those include ANR rate, crash rate, slow rendering, frozen frames, stuck wake locks, and excessive wakeups. The dashboards also report how many users are seeing each issue with…

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Android 

Google’s Tango Visual Positioning Service is like an indoor GPS

Google’s Daydream VR platform got a lot of love on the Google I/O stage, but the company has some intriguing plans for augmented reality (AR) as well. That includes what Google is calling its Tango Visual Positioning Service (VPS), a sort of AR GPS for the indoors. As Google VP of Virtual Reality Clay Bavor notes on stage, AR is most useful when tightly coupled with the real world, which is exactly what Tango VPS does. Working with Google Maps and visual data from the camera, Tango sees features in…

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