Realtime Search was, until last month, the search giant’s method of delivering relevant data from Twitter, Facebook and other social media services in real time. Whenever a major current event made headlines — such as Osama bin Laden’s death — Google Search would start displaying tweets and Facebook updates from users talking about the recent developments. It made Google‘s search engine more relevant during major world events, mashable says
It didn’t last, though. Google took Realtime Search down in July after it failed to come to an agreement with Twitter for continued access to Twitter‘s firehouse of data. Without a constant stream of tweets, the product was far less useful.
“The value the product was providing was not enough,” Google Fellow Amit Singhal said about the decision to turn off the feature during a search panel in Mountain View, California.
When asked about if or when Realtime Search would return, Singhal responded by saying the Google Search team is “actively working” on bringing the product back. He added that the team was experimenting with adding data from Google+ and other sources. It seems as if Google doesn’t believe it needs Twitter data to deliver a compelling real-time search offering.
After a running start, Google+‘s growth may be slowing down a bit. A report from Experian Hitwise found both traffic and users’ average time on the social network fell last week in the U.S.
Total visits to Google+ declined about 3% to 1.79 million in the U.S. for the week ending July 23 compared to the previous seven days, according to the research company. The site received 1.86 million visits the prior week. Average time on the site was down 10%, from 5 minutes, 50 seconds to 5 minutes, 15 seconds, mashable report
Matt Tatham, a rep for Experian Hitwise, was careful not to overplay the findings. “This is not a huge drop,” he says. The company extrapolates its figures from data from ISPs and from an opt-in panel of about 2.5 million users.
Following in Twitter’s footsteps, which quickly realized that brands and celebrities want a way to claim their identity on the service, Google plans to verify the identities of public figures on its social network, Google+, CNN reports.
According to Hollywood consultant Brett Schulte, Google is “very interested in having celebrities”, and is currently looking at several different methods for the verification process. The plan is unconfirmed by Google, but the company recently told brands and businesses not to create Google+ profiles just yet, as it works on a better experience for them.
Investors added $20 billion to Google’s market cap the first week after the launch of Google+ on June 28. A Morgan Stanleydowngrade on Friday, brought the total down to $15.8 billion because of doubts whether Google will indeed be able to capitalize on new products such as Google+. But somewhere in between there, give or take a few billion, is how much more the market thinks Google is worth than before the launch of Google+, as Techcrunch report.
On June 27 (the day before the announcement), the stock closed at $482.80. It rose to a high of $546.60 on July 7, for a $20.6 billion gain to its market cap (with 322.25 million hares outstanding). Then the stock dropped to $532 at Friday’s close.
The Next Web reports that a number of Google+ users on Saturday have received multiple email notifications, even when users have requested that those notifications be turned off. Some users have reported via Twitter that they have received as many as 50 notifications for just one friend being added to their Google Circle.
Later on Saturday Google’s Vic Gundotra, the head of the Google+ division, posted an apology about the multiple notifications on his Google+ page. He states, “For about 80 minutes we ran out of disk space on the service that keeps track of notifications. Hence our system continued to try sending notifications. Over, and over again. Yikes. We didn’t expect to hit these high thresholds so quickly, but we should have.”
A common problem with video chatting using tablets is shaky video. Now Google has selected SRI International to embed its video stabilization software inside the Google Talk app in Android 3.0 devices, promising to smooth out those jittery video transmissions from front-facing cameras on Android smartphones and tablets, reported by mashable.
The software works by identifying the user’s face, stabilizing that video before it’s compressed for transmission. There’s an added benefit to that steady shot — the video is easier to compress because there’s less movement involved, making the picture look sharper with less video noise.
Zuckerberg says he actually doesn’t have much to say about Google+.
On the other hand he does say that in the last five years we have seen more and more companies trying to put in social networking items into their applications and services. He adds,
“We’ll see a lot of companies who haven’t looked at social begin to build it into their apps. Not just Google.” He also says that we might see the streaming video company Netflix add some more social networking features.
Overall Zuckerberg states, “I view this as validation of how this is going to play out over the next five years. Every app is going to be social. If we build the best service, there’s massive value there. If we don’t, somebody else will.”
Google highlighted a new feature that’s super handy for anyone who uses above-ground public transportation on a regular basis: turn-by-turn navigation for transit, which helps make sure you never get off at the wrong bus stop. And they’ve just pointed out another great addition that I’ve been yearning for for ages. Say hello to offline maps, thanks to a new feature in labs called Download Map Area, techcrunsh report .
To activate the feature, you’ll first have to visit the Labs section of the Maps application, which you can access using the Menu button. Enable the Download Map Area option, and from then on when you browse to a Place page and hit the ‘More’ button, you’ll see an option to locally store a map of the surrounding area.
It’s a great start, but it’s still clearly a work in progress. You can’t look up transit maps while you’re offline, and you can’t run search queries for venues and addresses that appear in the map areas you’ve downloaded. But these are pretty obvious features, so hopefully they’re in the pipe.
If you are a registered Google+ user you can now invite your friends, family, or whoever you like.
to invite someone you can go into your Circles from the Google+ top button area, click on Add a new person, enter an email address and choose a circle for this person to go into. Once you click Save, a bar along the bottom will appear with a green button marked Invite to Google+ – click this button and an invitation will be sent via email.
During the time where Google+ invites were deactivated, there were several methods to still invite people and bypass the Google-initiated block. A popular one used as Neowin report was to enter a specific email address as a person to share a post with; the person was then automatically created a Google+ account and via the email sent, could log in. As Google has re-opened the invites, this should no longer be necessary.