Expectations were high at the keynote address that kicked off the Google I/O developer conference. But before you close the tab and move on to reading about a topic that actually interests you, hear me out: This year, the tech giant from Mountain View presumably had a lot of genuinely interesting products that would take us to the future.
Okay, maybe not that far ahead.
But to a future where a device reminiscent of Vegeta’s scouter (to be clear, we’re referring to Project Aura, formerly Google Glass) is actually something people would want to wear.
A tomorrow where smartphones are more like Lego (Project Ara) and less like single slabs of plastic or metal.
And self-driving cars are safe enough for widespread use.
Google instead seized the limelight to introduce two new communication apps — and two more answers to the question “What comes after Hangouts and Messenger?” And Facebook’s Messenger and WhatsApp. And Snapchat, Viber, Line, WeChat, Skype, BlackBerry Messenger, and, well, you get the picture.
Say “allo” to Allo, Google’s new messaging app.
But whereas Hangouts and Messenger don’t add anything fresh to the conversation, Allo leverages on Google’s AI strategy (by way of an integrated virtual assistant) to make itself heard.
It understands how we use language and can respond to messages without you typing anything, which sounds unsettling and a bit like when the IT guy gains remote access to your computer.
It’s even smart enough to respond to photos. So if someone sends you a picture of, say, a bowl of pasta, you may see a suggestion like “Yummy!” or “Oh-em-gee,” if you’re an “Oh-em-gee” type of person. Allo also learns over time, so the suggestions should get better as you use the app.
Also part of the attraction is how it can make your conversations more expressive. You can enlarge or shrink the size of an emoji or text by dragging the Send button upward or downward, giving the effect of screaming or muttering into the digital void.
There’s also Incognito Mode for sending messages that disappear into the ether, just like Snapchats, or encrypted ones that not even the big G can breach.
Then there’s Duo, a video-calling app that’s also encrypted end-to-end and performs well on slow networks.
But its billboard feature is called Knock Knock, which lets you see callers and the context in which they’re calling before picking up.
Your boss looking annoyed or stressed? Answer immediately. A college mate who’s been pestering you about investing in one of his ideas? That can wait indefinitely.
Both Allo and Duo will be available for Android and iOS “this summer.” Which begs the question: Can you nudge your loved ones to use yet another messaging service? We’ll find out soon enough, won’t we?
[irp posts=”8314″ name=”5 Reasons why I love Google Home”]
Pre-booked parking now possible with Dibz app
Call dibs on your parking space
Ever encountered a situation where you saw a vacant parking slot while scouring the parking area of a mall or any other establishment – only to find out that someone is standing on the actual slot to “reserve” it?
It has got to be one of the most frustrating moments for any vehicle owner. Fortunately, an app to address parking concerns has finally been born: Dibz.
MPT Mobility’s Dibz pre-booked parking is a secure and convenient app which allows drivers to search, pre-book, and pay in advance for a smooth and hassle-free parking experience.
Dibz guarantees parking space close to one’s destination, and offers reward points for users.
A detailed history of a customer’s bookings will also be made accessible – which comes in handy for reimbursements or simply tracking expenses.
Initially launched in Makati City, the service is now available in Dela Rosa Car Park 1 and 2 and Valero Car Park.
Dibz is downloadable on the Google Play Store or Apple App Store.
Replay! Apple Music launches new year-end experience
2022 Top Charts revealed
So, what have you been listening to an Apple Music in 2022? The redesigned Apple Music Replay experience will let you know what you’ve bopping to this year.
Apple Music Replay recaps what users listened to the past year. But new in 2022 is a year-end experience complete with expanded listening insights and new functionality. This includes a personalized highlight reel.
Users can discover their top songs, top albums, top artists, top genres, and more. Superfans can even discover whether they are in the top 100 listeners of their favourite artist or genre.
Apple Music listeners can continue checking Replay until December 31 and once the new year begins, keep listening on Apple Music to explore and share new 2023 insights each week.
All insights on Replay are optimized for sharing on socials or on any messaging platform.
How Apple Music Replay Works
Visit replay.music.apple.com and log in with the same Apple ID used for Apple Music. Play highlights or scroll through the page for more detailed insights. A truncated version of the site is available all year or as soon as a user is eligible.1
How to See Listening Stats
- Listen to enough music to qualify. Gauge qualification with a personalised progress bar on the Replay website. Both playlist and insights eligibility happens with the same listening threshold.
- Once a user is eligible for Replay, they can visit replay.music.apple.com.
- Explore listening stats, listen on the site, and share.
Replay is localised in 39 languages for all 169 countries and regions where Apple Music is available.
Top Charts 2022
Apple Music also revealed its year-end charts, spotlighting 2022’s top songs, top Shazams, top fitness songs, and most-read lyrics. Apple also shared a list of the most Shazamed K-Pop songs in 2022.
Top Songs of 2022: Singapore
Top Shazamed Songs of 2022: Singapore
Singapore: Top K-Pop Songs Shazamed
BeReal, Apex Legends Mobile win in Apple’s App Store Awards
With notable Cultural Impact Winners
If you’ve been looking for new apps to download on your Apple device, then look no further. Apple has just announced winners of the 2022 App Store Awards. It’s a list filled with everything from productivity to gaming and everything else in between.
The winners were selected by Apple’s global App Store editorial team. They were chosen based on the app’s ability to deliver exceptional experiences as well as make a profound cultural impact.
2022 App Store Award Winners
BeReal — iPhone app of the Year
BeReal gives users an authentic look into the lives of their family and friends. The user is given a prompt and has a day to post a BeReal in order to see posts from friends. The posts are always only real-time and thus, can’t be curated unlike ones in existing social media apps.
GoodNotes 5 — iPad app of the Year
It’s a free form digital paper that lets users annotate PDFs, share notes with colleagues and more. The CEO and Founder had the idea after he realized he was wasting so much paper solving math equations — which is easier to do in handwriting — during his college years. It was around this time that the first iPad was released and he saw the potential for a truly digital writing solution with it.
Mac Family Tree 10 — Mac App of the Year
MacFamilyTree 10 sparks the exploration of genealogy through stunning visual family trees and collaboration with loved ones around the world.
Gentler Streak — Apple Watch app of the Year
Gentler Streak helps users balance fitness and rest to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Cultural Impact Winners
Apple also selected five Cultural Impact winners that have. These apps made a lasting impact on people’s lives and influenced culture.
We track steps, our weight, sleep, and what not. But what about tracking our feelings? That’s what the app How We Feel from the How We Feel Project, Inc. does. It starts with a four-color mood meter. Select which color best represents how you’re feeling and it’ll expand to more granular emotions. You’ll then be asked to write what caused you to feel that way.
The team behind the app are working off three core principles; Free and accessible, Accepting of all feelings, and Research backed strategies.
Other than tracking, they also provide instructional videos as well as strategies to help improve your mood in case you find yourself in a feelings pattern that isn’t healthy for both you and the people around you.
Dot’s Home from the Rise-Home Stories Project spotlights systemic housing injustices and the subsequent impact within communities of colour through a compelling and thoughtful time-traveling tale.
Locket Widget from from Locket Labs, Inc. allows users to send live photos right to family and friends’ Home Screen, Locket Widget drives intimate connection between loved ones, free from traditional social media pressures.
Waterllama from Vitalii Mogylevets is probably the cutest way to monitor your liquid intake. Yes, not just water. Initially, the developers’ goal was just to track water intake. But the app has grown to taking note of hydration levels, taking into account every type of drink we take in.
There are even challenges in case you want to start drinking soda or coffee less. And they’re all presented in cute, bright packages featuring animals that are dressed to impress.
Inua – A Story in Ice and Time from ARTE Experience provides an engaging, mystical adventure for users to explore historical events that weave in elements of Inuit traditions, folklore, and breathtaking tales.
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