For many in Southeast Asian countries, video streaming can take a huge toll on data charges. Finally, Google is laying that to rest with the global launch of its lightweight YouTube Go app.
Compared to the original app, YouTube Go eats up less data, reducing the blow on costs at the end of the month. The reduced data usage also eases video streaming in areas with weak signals. Despite the default low data setting, users still have control over how much data the app uses.
The app allows downloading for offline viewing. The feature comes in varying video quality and data usage options. However, even at high video quality, downloading doesn’t take too many megabytes. Downloads will use either the phone’s storage or memory card. Further, the feature allows users to preview the video first before downloading.
YouTube Go can also transfer the video files to other YouTube Go users wirelessly. The transfer takes up no data but is still quite fast.
Originally announced back in September of 2016, YouTube Go was first launched only for the Indian market. After the exclusive beta testing, the app was released in 14 other countries. Now, Google is finally launching the app to over 130 countries worldwide. (Google is still mum on which countries are included in the list. However, you can probably check off those with fast Wi-Fi and data networks.)
YouTube Go is another step in Google’s Android Go program. With a full suite of light apps, Android Go is a lightweight version of the mobile operating system. It uses less memory, storage, and data, allowing more convenience for budget-friendly devices and data plans. Apps in the program (including YouTube Go) are compatible with phones that go as low as Jellybean 4.2.
Besides YouTube Go, Google has also released a lighter version of their Assistant app, called Google Assistant Go. Both YouTube Go and Assistant Go are available for download exclusively through the Google Play Store.
Google asks smartphone makers to pay for Play Store
In response to EU’s ruling
Months ago, Google landed in a scalding pool of Europe’s hot water. The European Competition Commission accused the company of anti-competition practices. Among other things, Google forced smartphone makers to bundle Chrome and Google Search as a requirement. According to the commission, the stipulation gives the company an unfair advantage over its rivals.
Eventually, the Commission hammered down a guilty verdict. From this, Google paid a record-breaking fine to the European Union. Besides this, the company had to stop the indicted practice.
Now, Google is finally implementing a resolution for the guilty verdict. Starting this month, the company will change its offered bundles for smartphone makers in the EU.
As opposed to enforcing the bundle, Google will offer Android’s apps for a price. Instead of a strong-arm strategy, Google’s new strategy aims for the best of both worlds. Smartphone companies can opt out of the program. Historically, some companies have already opted out of Android’s app ecosystem. For example, Chinese smartphones often implement their own variants because of China’s prohibitions.
Additionally, Google will loosen its regulations against forked versions of its Android operating system. Some smartphone makers alter Android’s inner workings for their own uses. Most notoriously, Xiaomi uses its own MIUI software. Previously, the bundling scheme swayed the deal towards Google’s favor, despite any proprietary changes. With looser regulations, companies can fork all they want.
Now, companies can sell smartphones running forked Androids. That is, if they also sell a separate smartphone with Google’s untouched software.
Amid all these changes, Android remains as free software for smartphones. Android can maintain its status as the world’s most ubiquitous operating system. However, if this issue elicits any questions, it’s this: How will Google’s new schema affect the casual consumer? Right now, we’ll have to wait and see.
6 iPhone apps for your well-being
Mental health is important!
World Mental Health Day may have come and gone but that shouldn’t mean that your well-being should be pushed aside. In fact, a healthy disposition should always be practiced. How does one do that in today’s fast-paced world?
We’ve got apps for you!
Omvana is a meditation app that measures stress levels and even your state of mind; it’s your personal mindfulness coach! The app also automatically connects to HealthKit.
With guided meditations, breathing exercises, sleep stories, and relaxing music, this app will help make sure you’re always in a relaxed mood.
Don’t know how to meditate? This app allows for guided meditations from the industry’s best practitioners!
Another guided meditation app which allows you to manage stress and even apply meditative practice to your every day. There’s also a sleep experience feature which promises better rest and calmness.
Aura’s three-minute meditations will bring more positivity to your life. The app also does life coaching, relaxing music, and even personalized meditations.
Better sleep means a better disposition! This app tracks sleep automatically with Advanced Heuristics AutoSleep so you’ll always have the info at hand.
What are you waiting for? Get to downloading and happy meditating!
Facebook Lite comes to iPhones at less than 5MB
It consumes less power, too!
After being enjoyed by Android users for years, the slimmed down version of Facebook’s main app finally arrived on iOS. Although, it’s only available to a select few — for now.
The Facebook Lite app was originally designed for developing countries where mobile data can be unreliable and Android phones are pretty basic. But, it also gained popularity among users with better phones because it uses way less data than the main Facebook app.
On iOS, the lite version is available for download through the Apple App Store for less than 5MB. Apart from being an easy download, it also uses less battery power and occupies minimal storage space.
This is going to be ideal for iPhones and even iPod Touch devices that are already showing signs of slowing down. The app is compatible with devices running iOS 9.0 and later.
For now, the app is only available in Turkey. As the testing phase expands to other regions, Facebook Lite will eventually be open for everyone.
Via: Business Insider
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