p Update 09/05/2017: People backing-up WhatsApp conversations through iCloud will now benefit from the messages being encrypted by default.WhatsApp has confirmed the backed-up files are encrypted and it is believed the feature was introduced in late 2016 but wasn't spotted until now.WhatsApp has turned on end-to-end encryption across all of its apps, the company has announced.The Facebook-owned app, which has more than one billion monthly active users, has turned on the Signal Protocol, developed by Open Whisper Systems, by default.The open-source private messaging system, which has been supported by Edward Snowden, will protect group chats, attachments, voice notes, and voice calls made across WhatsApp on Android, iPhone, Windows devices and some Nokia and BlackBerry models.The encryption method lets users see content that has been sent but does not allow service providers, such as WhatsApp itself, to access the content of the messages.
The Google Allo release comes just months after Apple s high-profile court battle with the US government over encryption built into its iPhones.At its developer conference, the company announced that its new messaging app, Allo, would feature an incognito mode that offered end-to-end encryption.The FBI had wanted Apple to rewrite the software on a phone used by one of the San Bernardino shooters to help it retrieve data.Following that showdown, it was unclear if the tech industry would double down on strong encryption or begin to soften its stance.Users will have to select an incognito mode and will have control over how long messages are stored on their devices.End-to-end encryption can also make it harder for users to search through past messages going back into the distant past.
When it launches this summer, Allo will offer an incognito mode that switches on an end-to-end encryption system known as Signal, designed by the privacy-focused non-profit Open Whisper Systems.And in the wake of Apple s landmark fight with the FBI over the encrypted iPhone of San Bernadino killer Syed Rizwan Farook, the move represents another step in Silicon Valley s shift toward user-controlled encryption in defiance of law enforcement.Allo s incognito mode represents a far more limited approach to encryption than Whatsapp s, Apple s, Viber s, or even what it s offering with Duo: Unlike with those apps, you must purposefully turn on incognito mode to send encrypted Allo messages; the app doesn t hide all messages by default.But Google s launching its encrypted communication apps as new tools that may or may not catch on, rather than Whatsapp s far bolder move to turn on encryption for its existing, massive userbase.Gmail and Google Hangouts, meanwhile, still lack end-to-end encryption, leaving them open to government surveillance orders.Allo and Duo s new security features, in other words, are Google s baby steps towards a fully-encrypted future, not the sort of bold moves to elevate privacy above profit or politics that some of its competitors have already taken.
You can now use your Android smartphone to pay for items in UK shops.Google announced the British roll-out of its wireless payments service Android Pay on Tuesday.Android users who have accounts with compatible banks will be able to tap their smartphones at NFC payment terminals to pay — much like you can already do with contactless debit and credit cards.It also works for payments within apps.Google is almost a year behind Apple on this one: Apple Pay, available on iPhones, launched in the UK back in July 2015.Business Insider tried Android Pay out at a press event earlier this week.You're held back only by your bank balance.Shops don't need to do anything to take an Android Pay payment — as long as it has an NFC payment terminal, which are pretty ubiquitous across the UK, the payment method will work.Banks that support Android Pay include Bank of Scotland, First Direct, Halifax, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, M Bank, MBNA, and Nationwide Building Society.Notably absent from the list is Barclays — which is no surprise.The bank also took an age to get on board with Apple Pay, finally starting support for the service in April 2016, almost a year after its launch.Your phone needs to be running Android 4.4 KitKat and must have an NFC chip for the tech to work.Google director Pali Bhat told Business Insider that he didn't know how many smartphones in the UK are compatible — but that seven out of 10 Android phones globally are.The launch of Android Pay has been a pretty poorly kept secret.Halifax and HSBC both accidentally set their setup website pages live early, and sandwich chain Pret put up signs on its payment terminals saying customers could pay with Android Pay.NOW WATCH: 10 WhatsApp tricks only power users know aboutLoading video...
Google today launched a new video calling app called Duo, as a sort of companion to the new Allo messaging app that was also introduced today at the Google I/O developer conference in Mountain View, California.Duo calls are end-to-end encrypted, said Google engineering manager Eric Kay.But the feature that makes Duo stand out most from other mobile-friendly video calling services — including Skype, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook s WhatsApp, not to mention Google s own Hangouts — is something called Knock Knock.It s a live video stream of the caller before you ve even picked up, Kay said.You not only see who s calling, but what they re up to and why they re calling.A smile, a beach, and a newborn baby can all draw you into the moment, making calls feel spontaneous and natural, and once you pick up Duo it puts you right into the call.Like Hangouts, Duo video calls run on top of WebRTC.Duo relies on a fairly new Google protocol called QUIC for quick UDP Internet connections , and it can perform a seamless handoff of calls between Wi-Fi and cellular connections, Kay said.One thing Duo doesn t have is support for calls between more than two phone lines.The app will become available on Android and iOS this summer, Kay said.
Any of you that still use multimedia messages MMS to send pictures to your mates -- who still does this?-- should be aware that Three is set to increase prices from 17.4p a message to 40p a message on June 13th.You ve got plenty of time to familiarise yourselves with WhatsApp and get all of your mates on board with the messaging app too before the price hike comes into effect.The more important news for the majority of customers is that any emojis added to standard text messages could cause you to be charged MMS prices, and that s no laughing matter.According to reports, you can also be charged MMS prices when you send an SMS to multiple recipients.Read More: The Best UK Mobile Phone DealsBefore you get all pissy with Three though, it s worth taking a look at MMS charges from its rivals.
Forget WhatsApp, FaceBook Messenger, iMessage and even Hangouts - Google's got two new messaging apps on the way that'll blow them all out of the water.Only this one lets you whisper and shout, shrinking or boosting your font so you don't need to mess about with bold, italics or endless punctuation to get your message across.It can automatically suggest replies, based on what your chat friends are saying or sending - recognising dog breeds, for example.You can call on Google without having to leave the chat app, so you can look up restaurants, book tables, or send directions to your mates without missing out on the conversation.It looks ace in action, but let's be honest - we're all using WhatsApp, aren't we?Both apps should be arriving this summer on Android of course and iOS.
It s a voice-activated device that looks like a small bookshelf speaker and acts as a voice-recognizing, intelligent front end to music and other entertainment, everyday tasks like calendar appointments, Google s search engine and home automation systems like Google s own Nest.But while Amazon can offer the world s largest retail store and content inventory, Google has search and its immense knowledge and product ecosystem.Users access the always-listening device, according to a video shown during the I/O keynote address, by saying Okay, Google.The video, which showed a typical family employing the device in the morning rush to work and school, indicated that Google Home is designed to work with devices throughout a house, including speakers, TVs and lights via home automation.Google Home, which will only support one account initially, is intended for release this year at an as-yet-undisclosed price.More than a dozen services are already integrated, including Uber, Pandora, OpenTable, Spotify, WhatsApp and Ticketmaster.
See larger imageInternodal s $12 Agenda Minder Mac App Store Link helps you prepare for your meetings by organizing any relevant information into an interactive agenda.The app records your daily transactions and includes a comprehensive tutorial to walk you through its every single aspect.See larger imageI-SmartSolutions s Rainbow integrates with popular cloud-sharing services—like DropBox, MediaFire, and Google Drive—to help you effortlessly move your data from one service to another.Once you ve linked the app with the services you use, you can rename, copy, create, and delete files and folders at will, just like you do with the Finder.See larger imageIf you want to give your index finger a little break, Pilotmoon Software s $3 RapidClick takes over your mouse-clicking duties.Designed for gamers and for people with limited dexterity, the app automates the process of tapping your mouse repeatedly by simulating mouse actions at regular intervals that range from 20 times a second to once an hour.
More Charts   Microsoft erased another part of its massive Nokia mistake this morning, selling its feature phone business for $350 million to Chinese manufacturer Foxconn.Microsoft had already written off the entire value of the original acquisition, and has scaled back its phone business dramatically in the last year.As this chart from Statista shows, Nokia's smartphone business was already on a steep decline when Microsoft bought it in 2014.Nokia's total phone sales peaked in late 2010 at over 120 million.The company signed its smartphone platform deal with Microsoft the following quarter.But by the time Microsoft bought it, its annual sales had already been cut in half.It would've taken a miracle — or a serious misstep by competitors like Apple or the Android handset makers — for Microsoft to turn that business around.NOW WATCH: 10 WhatsApp tricks only power users know aboutLoading video...
Today at I/O, Google took the wraps off its latest foray into the world of communications: the company announced Allo, a smart messaging app supercharged with machine learning and Google s new Google Assistant service its answer to Amazon s Alexa , giving users the ability not just to chat to each other with animated graphics and enlarging/shrinking text, but to call in Google and later other third-party apps to share media, plan events, buy things, and even think of what to say to each other.The iOS and Android app is being unveiled today, but it will only be live this summer, Google says.So while there are already a number of popular messaging apps out there today like Facebook s WhatsApp and Messenger; Viber; Line; WeChat and others like Slack focusing on enterprise — it s no surprise to see Google pooling together its strong cards to see if it can make its own messaging product fly.We are building search to be much more assistive, Google s CEO Sundar Pichai noted today during the I/O keynote when unveiling Google Assistant and the many helping nudges it gives you when you are looking for information through Google.com.The featuresAs with other messaging apps, users of Allo will be able to find people to chat to based on their phone numbers, and those that use Google accounts for services like Gmail will also be able to call in their contacts from those services.In addition to emoji and a whisper / loud mode where you can enlarge and shrink text to emphasize what you re saying, there are a number of AI-based details.
Google unveiled a new video calling application named Duo that will compete with Apple Inc. s FaceTime.Duo will work on both Android and Apple Inc. s iOS mobile operating system and is designed to adjust to slower, low-bandwidth networks, said Erik Kay, a product manager for Google, during a presentation at the company s IO developer conference Wednesday.It is encrypted and switches automatically between Wi-Fi and cellular networks, he added."We obsessed over every last detail of video transmission," Kay said."It has a feature named Knock Knock that shows a live video of the caller upfront, letting the receiver see who is calling and what they re doing.That s part of Google s goal to draw people into more conversations over its services, said Kay.Duo works with Allo, a new mobile messaging app, that includes an artificially intelligent digital assistant and Google s search engine.The two new offerings may help Google compete with Apple s FaceTime video calling service and Facebook Inc. s messaging services WhatsApp and Messenger.Google, the main division of Alphabet Inc., has lagged behind rivals in messaging and broader communications apps in recent years.
Available for download this summer for both Android and Apple iOS, Google has promised that Allo will also offer a mode in which chats can be set to expire and will give users the ability to set private notifications.With these developments, alongside a focus on artificial intelligence AI , Google is taking aim directly at its competition — such as Facebook's WhatsApp and Microsoft's Skype.It uses your existing phone number — also like WhatsApp — which simplifies the sign-up process and keeps everything as streamlined as possible.Google Allo uses artificial intelligence and an 'incognito' mode to compete with rival messaging appsGoogle touted a number of other features, including changing the size of messages from 'whisper to shout' , and image annotation.If it works as planned, it signals an ambitious next step for the already ambitious tech company.Like Allo, with a focus on security, Google said that all calls on Duo will be encrypted end-to-end.
Tech giant Google launches Allo and take up the fight with Facebook message. One day a year, Google organizes its large developer conference Google I / O where the company presents news. On Wednesday it was time again, and then it was clear that the company wants to challenge including Facebook, which already has apps Messenger and Whatsapp by launching its own messaging. The app, Google has named Allo and the tech giant will use its expertise in machine learning, writes among other Recode. Company chefsinjengör Erik Kay said from the stage that involves Allo among other things, will be able to suggest the answers when you're on the go and even predict what you want to say next. It is not just about default reply.
Google I/O: Google attempts to monopolise mobile life even further with video app Duo and smart messaging app Allo that can reply for youGoogle is attempting to compete with WhatsApp, Snapchat and iMessage with two new messaging applications that hope to keep people using its services, and inputting information, even when they re communicating.Allo and Duo will be available on Android and iOS this summer and claim to take a fresh look on how people connect – either with friends or family or in a business environment.Allo AlloGoogle AlloIntegration with Google s newly announced Google Assistant is a key distinguishing feature of Allo, which learns how you interact and can even reply for you depending on the context of the message or even a photo thanks to image recognition technology.This includes weather, flight details, maps and sports scores and Assistant can even perform tasks like booking a table at a restaurant.Crucially for businesses, Allo offers end to end encryption for chats with an incognito mode similar to the one in Chrome.Messaging has become an increasingly important battlefield for technology companies that want to keep users in their ecosystems for as long as possible so they view more ads and provide more information.
Google announced its new messaging app Allo at its I/O developers conference today, and it looks pretty cool.Allo even has an option for users to send their messages using end-to-end encryption, a security feature that has become increasingly popular and is the default in other chat apps like WhatsApp and Viber.In order for Google to add dinners with friends to your calendar or suggest replies, it needs to be able to read your messages — which it can t do if your chats are end-to-end encrypted.Most consumers will likely choose the latter, leaving security by the wayside, and civil liberties advocates are already voicing displeasure about it.If encryption isn t a default, suspects may forget to turn it on and accidentally leave their messages exposed to law enforcement.But those who choose to turn on Allo s encryption, dubbed incognito mode, will be getting a highly regarded security protocol: Google partnered with Open Whisper Systems to use the company s Signal Protocol.
About one year ago, Nick Fox, the executive in charge of communications at Google, asked some of his engineers what their ideal messaging app would look like if they could build it from scratch.The app aims to bring together all of Google's latest research in artificial intelligence, machine learning, voice recognition, and natural language processing.But the arrival of Allo raises an important question:What happens to Google's existing messaging app, Hangouts?Although Google says it will continue adding new features to Hangouts and improving the product, it won't necessarily be folding in chatbot capabilities any time soon.And Google's trio of different chat apps might not be so crazy after all, when you consider that rival Facebook has both Messenger and WhatsApp.And it's built w/ same small group sharing tech that already powers @googlephotos and new @YouTube sharing model... https://t.co/b3nXWVnLo4 — Bradley Horowitz @elatable May 16, 2016NOW WATCH: 10 WhatsApp tricks only power users know aboutLoading video...
Google debuted a shiny new chat app called Allo during its IO 2016 conference today, and while it's a fresh take on messaging, one element of the app is actually quite familiar.Turns out Allo's end-to-end encryption is built on the Signal Protocol, the same standard used to power encryption in WhatsApp and the Signal app."We've been collaborating together on the integration of Signal Protocol into Allo, which will bring all of Signal Protocol's strong encryption properties to Allo's incognito mode," wrote Open Whisper Systems, creator of the protocol, in a blog post.This is worrisome as you might accidentally send a message you wanted encrypted as, well, not encrypted, if you forget to switch to Incognito Mode.What's more, as noted by TechCrunch, Allo's most helpful features won't be so helpful if it can't see what you're talking about.Others have argued that opt-in end-to-end encryption at this point is better than none at all, but how many users bite when Allo becomes available later this summer remains to be seen.
View photosMoreIo keynote-126Watch out Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, Google has a new messenger app on the loose.You can ask the Google Assistant questions while inside Allo; you can even play games.You can even pull other users into the process, by asking @google what restaurant you should eat at, you'll see suggestions and the group can all decide.You can even take advantage of "Smart Replies" to quickly reply to a message inside Allo with the right context or response.All Allo messages will be encrypted as is the trend with messenger apps , but Allo will also have an incognito mode to make your messages even more private.Allo will be coming to iOS and Android later this summer.
Thousands of people gathered near Google s headquarters on Wednesday to hear the company s vision for the future.In past years, Google has used its developers conference to unveil all sorts of shiny new toys and services.Not all of them have been smash hits.And remember the Nexus Q, the orb-shaped music player that never even reached the market?But even those products were examples of Google planting a stake in the ground, and letting the world know that its engineers and researchers had cooked up something new and original that the company was willing to make a bet on.This year s crop of products, on the other hand, have a decidedly deja-vu feeling to them.Google is reacting to threats, and defending its turf, rather than leading the charge into new territory.Consider:The star of the show this year was Google Home, a sleek, me-too version of the Amazon Echo product.Most people referred to it as Google s Apple FaceTime competitor.Google also touted a new virtual reality headset design that will be coming out soon.Any tech company, especially one that operates a $75 billion-a-year business, needs to be strategic, playing both offense and defense.But Google used to stand out precisely because it wasn t content to complacently milk its legacy businesses; it had the foresight to spot and invest in the next big platforms, from smartphones to wearables.That DNA is still in the company.And when the show started this year there was something missing.NOW WATCH: 10 WhatsApp tricks only power users know aboutLoading video...