Google Inc (GOOG) Updates: Eric Schmidt on Spying, Bet on Photo-Editing, Maps’ Updates & More

Editor’s Note: Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)

Google’s Eric Schmidt says government spying is ‘the nature of our society’ (The Guardian)
Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman of Google, reiterated the tech industry’s call for greater transparency from the US government over surveillance on Friday, but declined to “pass judgment” on American spying operations. Speaking in New York, at an event hosted by the New America Foundation, Schmidt said it was time for a public debate about the nature of the surveillance activities carried out by the National Security Agency (NSA). But he also said that spying was a fact of modern life. “There’s been spying for years, there’s been surveillance for years, and so forth, I’m not going to pass judgement on that, it’s the nature of our society,” he said.

Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)

Google’s Bet On Native Client Brings Chrome And Google+ Photos Closer Together (TechCrunch)
Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is betting big on photos on Google+. Indeed, most of the innovation on the company’s social network so far has been around photos, including the #AutoAwesome launch at I/O. Last week, Google stepped up its efforts and launched a set of new photo-editing tools, including the ability to fine-tune Google+’s Auto Enhance feature, apply new filters and selectively adjust parts of an image. Just like the rest of the Google+ photo tools, these new features are a step ahead of the competition, but there’s also an issue: they only work in Chrome (and in the native iOS and Android Google+ apps).

Google Keep code hints at future Google Drive integration and support for video playback (The Next Web)
Ever since Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) launched Keep, its rival to note-taking apps like Evernote, there’s been an assumption that the service will integrate with Google Drive, which covers Google’s cloud storage and Google Docs services, but it seems that the connection will be broader than initially expected. The folks at Google Operating System raked through the Keep code to find a few lines that hint at a future integration that will let you upload any file to Drive and add it to a note. The code suggests that you’ll be able to preview files from Keep using the Google Drive viewer and other apps.

Google Maps for Android Updated With Sponsored Details and Better Navigation (TechnoBuffalo)
Android users have been receiving a staggered roll-out of an update for Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) Maps this weekend that brings some new features and updates along with it. Amongst the changes to Google Maps is improvement of hotel search results that will also include sponsored ads with rates and links to booking sites. Considering the popularity of the Maps app, it’s honestly a bit surprising Google didn’t try harder to monetize it more in the past, but it is certainly heading down that road as of late. The biggest change is that you will now be able to find your way to navigation much faster, and it is also apparently rerouting folks much quicker than it has in the past.

Google Glass No Longer Requires Tethering (Geeky gadgets)
Glass is an interesting piece of technology, but pretty pricy, especially when you consider the need to have a tethering plan with your smartphone just to be able to connect it to the internet while on the go. The latest update changes all that. Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) Glass users can save a few dollars and go back to a non-tethering plan without sacrificing their Glass’ mobile connectivity. Glass now works by simply sending information to your phone via the Glass Android app, bypassing the tether restriction of old. You’re good to go as long as you see the two arrows designating the app is functioning.

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