Christmas is almost upon us and things are still happening. In today’s news, we will see that the European Union might not be as cheery as the rest of us and fine Google an important amount of money but the guys in San Francisco and San Jose might be since they are the ones that get access to Google Shopping Express that delivers, among others, items from the Play Store in the same day. So if this has managed to get you interested then read further and see what else has happened.
Google risks huge fines
Google is in danger of being fined by the European Union as it stands accused of antitrust activities. To be more precise, Google is accused of placing its own products and services at the top of its search results by down-ranking results that led to competitors in an unfair manner. Google has made several proposals to the EU, including the labeling of Google’s services in the search results in order to differentiate them from competitors, but none of them were apparently satisfactory.
If a solution is not found in time, consequences could be drastic: as in $5 billion drastic. There is still some time left but not much and the clock is ticking for the American giant. The case will most likely be closed somewhere in the spring of 2014. It remains to be seen if Google manages to find an answer to this situation.
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“Elf” is available for free on Google Play Movies in the United States
It’s that time of year again when everybody starts watching Christmas movies with their family and girlfriends and who is better at adapting themselves to times like these than Google? “Elf”, the movie starring Will Ferrell for those of you who did not know about it, is now available to download for free with Google Play Movies.
However, this is just the SD version (you weren’t expecting HD for free, now were you?) and it is only available in the United States. The movie is about a guy who is brought up as an elf (the guy is played by Ferrell) and he ends up in New York City looking for his father. James Caan and Zooey Deschanel also star in this movie. So if you’re in the US and you haven’t seen it you can download it from here. If you have seen it, you can still have fun watching it again.
Android device users can enable tracking and see location history
All of you Android users can now track and record your every move with Google maps if you use services connected with locations and apps. Of course this sounds strange at the beginning but it is something you choose, not a given and you can opt it out by not agreeing to Google monitoring your location every time. So now if you have location services enabled on the apps you use you can go to maps.google.com/locationhistory and see your location history.
These feature might prove useful in some situations of course, if you want, for example, to record your progress on a specific trip. But, in the end, it is up to you to chose to have this feature or not.
Google Shopping Express ships items from the Play Store
Google Shopping Express is a service from Google that ships items to you on the same day. Unfortunately, it is only restricted to the area between San Francisco and San Jose. To make it more clear, if you order something until 5 PM on the 24th of December it will be delivered to you just in time for Christmas.
There are currently seven items from the Play Store available there, including the 16 GB Nexus 10, the 16 GB 2013 Nexus 7 and the Chromecast. So if you live in the area mentioned above, Google Shopping Express will be an opportunity to make some real last-minute shopping.
Apex Launcher 2.2 is on the Play Store
Apex Launcher 2.2 is now available on the Play Store and it makes use of the huge array of options that come with KitKat, Android’s latest version of its operating system. From the visual point of view, the differences can be spotted pretty easily and from our point of view everything is improved.
Among the visual improvements we should probably mention the transparent notification bar for which you have to have Android 4.4 or a custom ROM, the improved search bar and the folder icons. You can download the Apex Launcher from the Play Store for free.
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