Google's Android Messages rolls out big improvement for searching old texts

Google's Android Messages rolls out big improvement for searching old texts

While texting tends to be a very in-the-moment kind of thing, you'll frequently have reasons to go back and check messages that you sent last week, last month, or even last year. Unfortunately, chat apps are routinely bad at helping you find what you're looking for, which has been a particular pain point for Google.

SEE: WhatsApp to start showing ads in its app and charge businesses texting fees

Despite its empire-making search wizardry, Google and its most recently favored chat... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Slack buys Astro email app: 4 things it could do with it

Slack buys Astro email app: 4 things it could do with it

Slack seems to becoming the workplace chat app of choice, crossing a threshold of 3 million paying users back in May, with 8 million monthly active users altogether. Facebook, Microsoft, and others keep nipping at its heels, but the platform remains a moving target. For example, Slack has just announced the acquisition of Astro, the maker of Astrobot, a popular email app that had integrations into the chat app.

SEE: Slack competitor Microsoft Teams now has a free preview version

Apparently,... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Microsoft Teams brings background blur to video calls to hide the mess behind you

Microsoft Teams brings background blur to video calls to hide the mess behind you

Business chat apps are becoming big business. Slack has emerged as the market leader, but Microsoft Teams (Android, iOS) is gearing up for a real fight. The company recently made a preview (beta) version available for free, whereas it used to require an Office 365 subscription. This maneuver worked for Internet Explorer back in the day, allowing the company to undercut Netscape Navigator and eventually displace it as the world's default web browser.

While times have changed... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Calm meditation app expands to Sonos, American Airlines, and German language

Calm meditation app expands to Sonos, American Airlines, and German language

The Calm (Android, iOS) app, which helps users de-stress, reduce anxiety, and sleep better via guided meditations, Sleep Stories, breathing programs, relaxing music, and nature sounds, announced three new initiatives today.

SEE: Best meditation apps for iOS and Android to relieve stress

The formerly English-only app is now adding non-English content, starting with two German Sleep Stories narrated by TV and film actor Sebastian Koch and translated versions of Calm's top meditations including 7 Days of Calm, 7... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software

Me2Bot fights sexual harassment with AI in the office

Me2Bot fights sexual harassment with AI in the office

Sexual harassment is a prevalent issue in the workplace. A 2018 online survey revealed that 81 percent of women had experienced some form of sexual harassment during their lifetime. Of that number, 38 percent of the harassment happened at work.

Beerud Sheth, the CEO and co-founder of Gupshup, created the Me2Bot, a chatbot designed to help victims of sexual harassment in the workplace.

While men can also be victims of sexual harassment, women are disproportionately affected.

Sadly, but... Read More »

Topics: Business Software , Chat , Apps And Software

Excel's new 'Insert Data from Picture' feature turns photos into spreadsheets

Excel's new 'Insert Data from Picture' feature turns photos into spreadsheets

One of the jobs of a journalist is taking interview recordings and transcribing them into text on a page. Transcription used to be a process so tedious that entire companies offered their services to do it for you and save you time. Some still do, but we also now have mobile apps that do the job well enough to work in a pinch.

People working with spreadsheets in Microsoft Office also need to convert data from one format to another... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Google redesigns search to make it more like an app: 4 changes to watch

Google redesigns search to make it more like an app: 4 changes to watch

The Google search engine turned 20 this week and the company is rolling out new features to celebrate.

Ben Gomes, vice president of Google Search, News, and Assistant, made the announcement yesterday on Google's blog. The updates will aim to refine the most relevant and high quality information, attempt to anticipate future queries, and make searches more visual.

Google now has many services, but its search engine remains what it's best known for. The new features give love to... Read More »

Topics: Search Tools , Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software

Microsoft Office 2019 arrives for those who don't want to buy Office 365

Microsoft Office 2019 arrives for those who don't want to buy Office 365

Microsoft has officially unveiled Office 2019 for Windows and Mac, but it's not very enthusiastic about it. In the official announcement, Microsoft said that Office 365 remains the best choice.

"The new enhancements in Office 2019 are a subset of a long list of features that have been added to Office 365 ProPlus over the last three years," said Jared Spatar, Corporate Vice President for Office and Windows Marketing, in the press release.

Office Home and Business 2019... Read More »

Topics: Productivity Software , Apps And Software

How Google AI is helping protect people from floods and natural disasters

How Google AI is helping protect people from floods and natural disasters

Preparedness and having as much information as possible is vital before and during a natural disaster. Real-time forecasts aren't available everywhere, though, which leaves people vulnerable.

Floods in particular wreak havoc around the world. Countries around the world have wet seasons and monsoon season, and Google estimates 250 million people are affected.

With AI, Google can create better forecasting models to predict when and where floods are likely to occur.

Google takes into account past flooding, river level readings, and... Read More »

Topics: Weather Software , Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software

Best apps for learning Spanish in 2018

Best apps for learning Spanish in 2018

Whether you're learning Spanish for a class, a work promotion, a trip, or even a relocation to Mexico, Spain, or Central or South America, you want it to come easy. The following seven language learning apps make learning Spanish child's play with fun exercises and games that are built on spaced repetition, which is great for retaining new vocab in your long-term memory. You'll be conversing and even writing like native speakers in no time with the best apps for... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software

Salesforce to redesign iOS app with exclusive features; FaceID, Siri Shortcuts, chat, and more

Salesforce to redesign iOS app with exclusive features; FaceID, Siri Shortcuts, chat, and more

If you're using iOS in a business setting, there's a lot to like about Apple's mobile operating system. For one, it gets regular security updates while Android still suffers from fragmentation no matter how much money you spend on your phone.

Ask any cybersecurity expert, and they'll tell you that out-of-date devices are one of the biggest weak points for a hacker to get in and make a mess of your company's hardware ecosystem.

SEE: The best apps for renting and buying movies in 2018

With... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Microsoft is expanding its war on weak passwords and beefing up Office 365 security

Microsoft is expanding its war on weak passwords and beefing up Office 365 security

In the midst of businesses beefing up their digital security in the wake of rising cyber threats, Microsoft has announced new additions for its authenticator app (Android, iOS) and Office 365 to help customers make sure that the right personnel are getting access to their systems. Now, companies using Microsoft's Azure Active Directory can set up the authenticator to verify access, and new security tools are being built into Office 365.

These announcements come as part of Microsoft's... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

How 'BabyFormula' app helps parents save time and money when feeding their infant

How 'BabyFormula' app helps parents save time and money when feeding their infant

Mixing up baby formula from powder can be tedious. Especially if it's late, your baby is screaming, and you can't seem to get the bottle temperature right. It's not like you can stock up for the week either. Keeping formula for longer than 48 hours after you've prepared it increases the risk for bacteria.

Historically, making sure the formula is safe for a baby is half guessing, half waiting. After letting the water boil for about a minute, it needs... Read More »

Topics: Kids & Parenting Software , iOS Software , Apps And Software

Apple officially releases MacOS Mojave for download in the Mac App Store

Apple officially releases MacOS Mojave for download in the Mac App Store

MacOS 10.14 "Mojave" is now available in the Mac App Store for download. The update is free and includes a number of new features teased over the last few months. Apple says that Mojave is compatible with all Mac "introduced mid-2012 or later, plus 2010 and 2012 Mac Pro models with recommended Metal-capable graphics cards."

After its grand reveal at WWDC 2018. One of the most highly anticipated aspects of the upgrade was iOS apps coming to the Mac Store.... Read More »

Topics: Downloads , iOS Software , Apps And Software , Operating Systems & Updates

YouTube Music app finally gets new download and stream quality settings on Android

YouTube Music app finally gets new download and stream quality settings on Android

When YouTube Music launched four months ago back in May, it was cool but missing a few features that tune streamers have gotten accustomed to. While it was compelling to be able to cleanly navigate a huge library of music videos in addition to streaming regular audio, we noted that the app lacked the ability to adjust the quality of your downloads and streams, which its predecessor Google Play Music (Android, iOS) has had for some time.

SEE:... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software

Review: MacOS Mojave offers 3 welcome upgrades and a few unfixed annoyances

Review: MacOS Mojave offers 3 welcome upgrades and a few unfixed annoyances

Apple's MacOS Mojave update offers lots of nice touches that continue to make Apple's desktop operating system a pleasure to use.

What is MacOS Mojave?

MacOS 10.14 Mojave is the latest version of Apple's desktop operating system, following up on last year's High Sierra. Since 2011, Apple has been on an annual release schedule for MacOS revisions, pushing out a major MacOS update each summer or early fall. Since 2014, Apple has also been making available a public beta of MacOS, so... Read More »

Topics: Mac Software

The 5 best Netflix alternatives for streaming TV and movies

The 5 best Netflix alternatives for streaming TV and movies

Netflix is the top streaming service to watch binge-worthy original TV shows like "Stranger Things," "GLOW," and "The Crown" as well as major and indie films, provocative documentaries, and star-studded comedy and concert specials on your smartphone, tablet, desktop, and Smart TV. Memberships start at $7.99 for watching in standard definition on one device and go up to $13.99 to watch in Ultra HD on up to four devices.

SEE: Ranking Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Video Streaming Apps in... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software

Google testing new advanced photo effects to compete with Apple iPhone XS

Google testing new advanced photo effects to compete with Apple iPhone XS

Earlier this month, Apple gave an impressive demo of the upgraded camera capabilities of the new iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR. The new phones incorporate real-time machine learning, Smart HDR, zero shutter lag, and a four-frame buffer to produce the best photo.

One of the most interesting features was Depth Control, letting users change the background blurriness of a photo after it's been taken. Seemingly to keep up with Apple's advances, Google Photos version 3.23 is starting to circulate... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software , Photo Editors

New 'Binge' app from PopSugar helps you decide the best TV shows to stream next

New 'Binge' app from PopSugar helps you decide the best TV shows to stream next

If you're like me, your Netflix queue is packed with movies and TV shows that look interesting, but you might never watch. Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime can offer suggestions based on what I watched, but I wind up cycling through the same three shows constantly.

The Binge app (iOS) from PopSugar wants to help users find the best shows to stream next, based on their preferences. It's not the first of its kind, but the app does... Read More »

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software , Android , Apps And Software , TV & Movies

Report: Facebook's Portal 'video chat device' to be announced next week

Report: Facebook's Portal 'video chat device' to be announced next week

When the original Amazon Echo device launched in November 2014, it kicked off a wave of "smart speaker" home appliances that connect people to AI like Alexa or the Google Assistant to let them stream music, send texts, make phone calls, and perform other digital tasks hands-free.

SEE: How to use Google Maps in Apple CarPlay: Think different

The second wave of this phenomenon is shaping up like this: Add a screen to the device and basically make it a stationary tablet.

In... Read More »

Topics: Windows Software , Mac Software , Android Software , iOS Software