US To Accuse Google of Protecting Illegal Monopoly

The Justice Department plans to accuse Google of maintaining an illegal monopoly over search and search advertising in a lawsuit to be filed on Tuesday, the government’s most significant legal challenge to a tech company’s market power in a generation, according to officials at the agency. From a report: In its suit, to be filed in a federal court in Washington, D.C., the agency will accuse Google, a unit of Alphabet, of illegally maintaining its monopoly over search through several exclusive business contracts and agreements that lock out competition, said the officials, who were not authorized to speak on the record. Such contracts include Google’s payment of billions of dollars to Apple to place the Google search engine as the default for iPhones. The agency will argue that Google, which controls about 80 percent of search queries in the United States, struck agreements with phone makers using Alphabet’s Android operating


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/VRKIi_S54RE/us-to-accuse-google-of-protecting-illegal-monopoly

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Google Music Shuts Down Smart Speaker Support and Music Store

Google has started to shut down parts of its 9-year-old music service as it transitions people to YouTube Music. Ars Technica reports: The gradual shutdown started on Monday with the death of the Google Play Music Store, which previously let you purchase music for playback and download, as opposed to the all-you-can-eat rental services that dominate the music landscape today. Google’s Music store was a section of the Google Play Store, which now just shows a message saying the feature has been removed. Google is getting out of the business of selling music entirely and now only offers a rental service through YouTube Music.

The other big feature shutdown is music playback on Google Home and Nest Audio speakers. While the Google Music app still works and you can start a playback through Chromecast, you’re no longer able to start music by voice through Google Assistant devices. If you dig


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/Tg1lyuDujp8/google-music-shuts-down-smart-speaker-support-and-music-store

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Android 11 has arrived

Google today announced the launch of Android 11, the latest version of its mobile operating system. After a slightly longer public preview, users who own a select number of Pixel devices (starting with the Pixel 2), OnePlus, Xiaomi, OPPO or realme phones will now see the update roll out to their phones in the coming days, with others launching their updates over the next few months.
Android 11 isn’t a radical departure from what you’ve come to expect in recent years, but there are a number of interesting new user-facing updates here that mostly center around messaging, privacy and giving you better control over all of your smart devices.
At the core of the improved messaging and communication features are improved notifications for conversations from your messaging apps. These now live in a dedicated space at the top of the notification shade and feature a more “people-forward design,” as the company describes


Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/8hralQlAB2Q/

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Google’s New ‘Verified Calls’ Feature Will Tell You Why a Business is Calling You

Google today is introducing a new feature for Android phones that will help legitimate businesses reach their customers by phone by having their brand name and reason for calling properly identified. From a report: The feature, known as “Verified Calls,” will display the caller’s name, their logo, a reason why they’re calling, and a verification symbol that will indicate the call has been verified by Google. The feature arrives at a time when spam calls are on the rise. U.S. consumers received 61.4 billion spam calls in 2019, according to a recent report from RoboKiller, representing a 28% increase from the prior year. The U.S. Federal Communications Commission also says that unwanted calls, are its top consumer complaint. Google’s new system gives legitimate businesses a way to share their information with consumers along with their reason for calling on the incoming call screen. This, however, only works with those participating


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/nUGcjmMViKI/googles-new-verified-calls-feature-will-tell-you-why-a-business-is-calling-you

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Chromium’s DNS-Hijacking Tests Accused of Causing Half of All Root Queries

ZDNet reports:
In an effort to detect whether a network will hijack DNS queries, Google’s Chrome browser and its Chromium-based brethren randomly conjures up three domain names between 7 and 15 characters to test, and if the response of two domains returns the same IP, the browser believes the network is capturing and redirecting nonexistent domain requests. This test is completed on startup, and whenever a device’s IP or DNS settings change.

Due to the way DNS servers will pass locally unknown domain queries up to more authoritative name servers, the random domains used by Chrome find their way up to the root DNS servers, and according to Verisign principal engineer at CSO applied research division Matthew Thomas, those queries make up half of all queries to the root servers. Data presented by Thomas showed that as Chrome’s market share increased after the feature was introduced in 2010, queries matching the


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/nlNwnTdaI9Y/chromiums-dns-hijacking-tests-accused-of-causing-half-of-all-root-queries

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Google Resumes Its Attack on the URL Bar, Hides Full Addresses on Chrome 86

An anonymous reader shares a report: Google has tried on and off for years to hide full URLs in Chrome’s address bar, because apparently long web addresses are scary and evil. Despite the public backlash that came after every previous attempt, Google is pressing on with new plans to hide all parts of web addresses except the domain name in Chrome 86, this time accompanied by an admittedly hover animation. The new look builds upon the animation-less hover reveal that’s already in testing, but in contrast to that method, the improved variant also displays the protocol and the subdomain, which remain invisible in the older version. That’s achieved with a neat sliding animation that moves over the visible part of the URL to make space for the strings preceding it.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.


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Google Authenticator’s First Android Update in Years Lets You Move Your Account Between Devices

Google Authenticator, the company’s code-based authentication app, has received its first update in three years, updating the app’s interface for larger screens with more modern aspect ratios and delivering one of the platform’s most-needed features. From a report: The Android version was last updated on August 22nd, 2017, while the iOS one was updated around a year ago to adjust it for iPhone X screens. Now, for the first time, Authenticator users will be able to easily transfer their account from one device to another without needing to manually transfer each code or disable and reenable two-factor authentication (2FA) on each account. The update introduces this feature through an import / export tool that lets you choose which accounts to include and transfer using a single QR code scan. It’s a feature that competitor Authy has provided for quite some time, so it’s refreshing to see it come to Authenticator,


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/bctD5E80rb0/google-authenticators-first-android-update-in-years-lets-you-move-your-account-between-devices

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Google hits pause on Chrome and Chrome OS releases

Google today announced that it is pausing upcoming Chrome and Chrome OS releases “due to adjusted work schedules.”
The company confirmed that we will still see security updates, though, which will get merged into version 80, the browser’s current stable release version. “We’ll continue to prioritize any updates related to security, which will be included in Chrome 80,” the team writes in today’s brief announcement.
Don’t expect any new feature updates anytime soon, though. Chrome version 81 is currently in beta testing and will likely remain in this channel for now. Like so much in this current situation, it’s unclear when Google plans to resume regular updates.
Earlier this week, Google also noted that Android app reviews will likely now take longer as the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced in-office staffing levels. The same holds true for YouTube. As YouTube is taking measures to protect its staff, it says it’ll rely more on its


Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/LYWgegth6Mk/

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Google Translate app update introduces speech transcription functionality

The Google Translate application for Android may now be used to transcribe speech; the new functionality allows anyone to “transcribe foreign language speech as it’s happening”, according to Google. Google Translate Product Manager Sami Iqram describes the motivation behind the new feature. Recently, I was at my friend’s family gathering, where her grandmother told a story from her childhood. I could see that she was excited to share it with everyone but there was a problem — she told the story in Spanish, a language that I don’t understand. I pulled out Google Translate to transcribe the speech as it… [Continue Reading]


Original URL: https://betanews.com/2020/03/18/google-translate-update-speech-transcription/

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