Tag Archives: Ice Cream Sandwich

Introducing Chrome for Android

In 2008, we launched Google Chrome to help make the web better. We’re excited that millions of people around the world use Chrome as their primary browser and we want to keep improving that experience. Today, we’re introducing Chrome for Android Beta, which brings many of the things you’ve come to love about Chrome to your Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich phone or tablet. Like the desktop version, Chrome for Android Beta is focused on speed and simplicity, but it also features seamless sign-in and sync so you can take your personalized web browsing experience with you wherever you go, across devices.

Speed
With Chrome for Android, you can search, navigate and browse fast—Chrome fast. You can scroll through web pages as quickly as you can flick your finger. When searching, your top search results are loaded in the background as you type so pages appear instantly. And of course, both search and navigation can all be done quickly from the Chrome omnibox.

Simplicity
Chrome for Android is designed from the ground up for mobile devices. We reimagined tabs so they fit just as naturally on a small-screen phone as they do on a larger screen tablet. You can flip or swipe between an unlimited number of tabs using intuitive gestures, as if you’re holding a deck of cards in the palm of your hands, each one a new window to the web.


One of the biggest pains of mobile browsing is selecting the correct link out of several on a small-screen device. Link Preview does away with hunting and pecking for links on a web page by automatically zooming in on links to make selecting the precise one easier.

And as with Chrome on desktop, we built Chrome for Android with privacy in mind from the beginning, including incognito mode for private browsing and fine-grained privacy options (tap menu icon, ‘Settings,’ and then ‘Privacy’).

Sign in
You can now bring your personalized Chrome experience with you to your Android phone or tablet. If you sign in to Chrome on your Android device, you can:

  • View open tabs: Access the tabs you left open on your computer (also signed into Chrome)—picking up exactly where you left off.
  • Get smarter suggestions: If you visit a site often on your computer, you’ll also get an autocomplete suggestion for it on your mobile device, so you can spend less time typing.
  • Sync bookmarks: Conveniently access your favorite sites no matter where you are or which device you’re using.


Chrome is now available in Beta from Android Market, in select countries and languages for phones and tablets with Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich. We’re eager to hear your feedback. Finally, we look forward to working closely with the developer community to create a better web on a platform that defines mobile.

(Cross-posted from the Chrome blog and on the Mobile blog)

Shipping the Google in Google+

A few weeks ago Larry mentioned that we’d start shipping the Google part of Google+. The Android team then launched Ice Cream Sandwich, with a focus on improved sharing via Google+. And today we’re rolling out two more Google+ features that integrate with two more Google products: YouTube and Chrome.

YouTube
It’s no secret that YouTube is filled with tons of great content (from inspiring speeches to music videos to honey badgers). We wanted to bring YouTube directly into Google+—as well as make it easier to watch and share your favorites—so we’re launching a YouTube “slider” in the stream. Here’s how it works:

  • Mouse over the new YouTube icon at the top right of Google+
  • It’ll slide out and ask, “What would you like to play”?
  • Enter whatever you’re in the mood for (like a topic or a musical artist)

We’ll start playing a list of related videos in a new pop-up window, and if you move the pop-up elsewhere, you can still navigate your playlist from the slider:

From left to right: YouTube slider (closed), slider (open), pop-up playlist, slider (while playing)

Sharing YouTube videos with your circles also works (of course), but there’s a nice little twist: the people you share with can open a related playlist directly from your post! Last but not least, we’re starting to include YouTube playlists in Google+ search results.

YouTube video in the stream (left), YouTube playlist in Google+ search results (right)

Chrome
We’re also rolling out two new Google+ Chrome extensions:

  • +1 button: +1 any webpage and share it with your circles
  • Notifications: check your Google+ notifications while you browse the web

Of course, if you don’t use Chrome, then you can use Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer. The new version—also rolling out today—includes these same sharing and notification features.

Google+ Chrome extensions: +1 button (left), notifications (right)

We’ve got lots more planned for Google+, YouTube and Chrome (and all the other Google products you already use). But we hope you enjoy today’s small taste of shipping the Google in Google+.

Unwrapping Ice Cream Sandwich on the Galaxy Nexus

(Cross-posted on the Google Mobile blog)

Beaming a video with a single tap or unlocking a device with only a smile sounds like science fiction. Now, you can actually do these things (and more) with a phone that fits in the palm of your hand.

Wednesday morning in Hong Kong—together with Samsung—we unveiled Galaxy Nexus, the first phone designed for the latest release of Android 4.0, also known as Ice Cream Sandwich.

With a super slim profile, Galaxy Nexus features a 4.65” Contour Display with true high definition (720p) resolution and a lightning-fast dual core 1.2ghz processor combined with 4G LTE or HSPA+ technology. Galaxy Nexus also features the latest in software: Ice Cream Sandwich makes Android simple and beautiful, and takes the smartphone to beyond smart.

Beauty and simplicity
With Ice Cream Sandwich, our mission was to build a mobile OS that works on both phones and tablets, and to make the power of Android enticing and intuitive. We created a new font that’s optimized for HD displays and eliminated all hardware buttons in favor of adaptable software buttons. We also dramatically improved the keyboard, made notifications more interactive and created resizable widgets.

The desktop-class browser is significantly faster, featuring a refined tab manager and the ability to sync your bookmarks with Google Chrome. Ice Cream Sandwich also features the best mobile Gmail experience to date, with a new design that lets you quickly swipe through your inbox and search messages even when you’re offline. Calendar boasts a clean new look and you can zoom into your schedule with a pinch.

Connect and share
People are at the heart of Ice Cream Sandwich. We rethought how you browse your contacts with the new People app, which combines high-resolution photos and updates from Google+ and other social services. It’s also easier to capture and share your life with family and friends. Galaxy Nexus sports a high-end camera with zero shutter lag, automatic focus, top notch low-light performance and a simple way to capture panoramic pictures. Shoot amazing photos or 1080p video, and then edit and share them directly from your phone.

Beyond smart
Galaxy Nexus isn’t just a smartphone—it’s beyond smart. Ice Cream Sandwich gives you complete control over the amount of mobile data you use by helping you better understand and manage it. We’re also introducing Android Beam, which uses near field communication (NFC) to instantly share webpages, YouTube videos, maps, directions and apps by simply tapping two phones together. Face Unlock uses state-of-the-art facial recognition technology to unlock your phone with nothing more than a smile.

This weekend marks the third birthday of the G1, the first-ever Android phone. Nine releases later, more than 550,000 Android devices are activated daily.

Starting in November, Galaxy Nexus will be available in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia. Check out the Nexus website for a product tour and more info.