How (Artificial Intelligence) AI Will Attract Android Users

Android is another platform that Google has focused upon and their efforts are clearly visible – Android occupies more than 87.9 % market share. With the latest Android P right around the corner, it seems like a good time to take the best of both worlds – Machine Learning and Android and showcase why Android is more than likely to beat its competitors using Google’s mammoth like intelligence prowess and why AI will attract everyday users as well as developers.

Here are a few reasons why.

Google Assistant

Google announced its virtual helper back in May of 2016 during its annual conference, Google I/O. Google described it as a “conversational assistant” and hoped that it would provide “an ambient experience that extends across devices”. And the feedback received has been mostly positive.

Of course, Google isn’t alone in making an attempt at lending a software hand to its users. In fact, it isn’t even the first – Apple released a beta version of Siri with its iPhone 4S almost a decade ago, October 2011. To say that software such as Siri has come a long way in these 7 years would be a gross understatement. It seems like every tech giant is releasing their own assistants every other week. While the more prominent ones are Microsoft’s Cortana, Amazon’s Alexa, Samsung’s Bixby, Google’s Assistant, and Apple’s Siri, nearly every review from professional testers reveals the one that manages to swing almost everything they throw at them. And that’s the Google Assistant.

It has proven its mettle countless number of times in tasks ranging from speech recognition and contextual understanding to providing concise yet verbose information to any queries the user may make.

Some would say it’s years ahead of other virtual assistants although and advancements like the Duplex is just confirming this.

AI Powered Apps

Tech giants are recognising the importance of incorporating machine learning into their products and as our systems keep getting more powerful and people generate more data than ever, it’s no wonder why they do so. This is evident from companies adopting and promoting intelligent computations.

Apple has been urging developers to utilize it’s relatively new CoreML framework that can be used to train machine learning models for developing apps for iOS. It’s too early to make a judgement on this step by Apple, but it’s quite safe to say that the red fruit iPhone manufacturer is late to the party.

Google released an open source framework called Tensorflow back in 2015 after it was tested and developed internally for more than 4 years. It has since gained the badge of industry standard and is one of the most active repository on GitHub. It was developed with developers in mind and has multiple ports for different operating systems and supports multiple programming languages as well so a developer feels right at home.

Tensorflow Lite is Google’s aim at having native support for it’s deep learning models in Android phones. Apps such as Gmail are already putting this into use by featuring something called “Smart Replies” that basically just try to understand the situation and context on an email received and will display a few options that might make for a good reply to the mentioned. Another famous app is Photos by Google that uses deep learning, a popular form of machine learning, to recognize people from pictures stored on the smartphone and suggest possible options such as sharing them with the person themselves or create an entirely new album for them.

Long story short, Google has already starting rolling apps like Translate, Assistant, Photos, Gmail, etc and has made the necessary tools for developers to do the same with their own. Which brings us to the next topic –

Extremely Well Developer Support

Google has always been a loved one by developers. Besides offering great opportunities such as GSOC, it has released open source libraries such as scikit-learn and TensorFlow that have been hugely popular and successful within the developer community.

Even Android, being open source, offers a lot of flexibility for developers and so, naturally, developers will be much more focused towards building scalable, optimized apps for this platform.

Google wants more and more people to enter this field of machine and has made efforts to do so. One such instance is it’s Machine Learning Crash Course. It’s a from scratch course aimed at developers with almost no previous experience in the field of AI. It guides the user from basic linear algebra concepts to state of the art convolutional neural networks.

Android developers were given attention with the announcement of Tensorflow Lite that is an ecosystem for the said platform. It works smoothly with the official Android IDE, Android Studio to develop apps with the same level of consistency as before.

Google Duplex

Google didn’t fail to make the jaws of visitors and the viewers of its developer conference for 2018 drop to the ground in pure awe. It showcased something the developers at Google had been hard at work at, named Google Duplex.

It’s an extension of the already powerful Google Assistant that helps the user get through his / her day by making appointments or bookings for services such as ordering food from a store that doesn’t have an online presence or fixing a haircut from a salon for the user.

It was presented by Sundar Pichai, leaving the audience clapping their hands away. And why wouldn’t they? They witnessed an age-old test called the Turing Test that was supposed to be almost a decade away from being solved, annihilated albeit in a very specific manner.



Source by Ashish Kumar Pandey

Benefits of an Android TV Box

The Android TV box is a useful piece of kit that connects to the TV via the HDMI port to offer most of the features of Android. This type of set up is very flexible and easily connects to most TVs with the right port and is a lot cheaper than a smart TV. Here are a few of the benefits of using the Android TV box:

Endless apps

One of the most appreciated benefits is the ability to use and install the endless apps that are now available on the Android operating system. By visiting the Google Play store using the internet connection, it is possible to install the latest apps related to not only multimedia content, but also audio editing applications, games, books, magazines, sending email, or signing into social media accounts, such as Facebook and Twitter.

TV support

By connecting the Android TV box to the TV at home via the internet; it is also possible to connect to other devices in the home, such as those that make use of technologies like Airplay, Miracast, DLNA, or others that function with Android. This makes it very flexible to share various types of multimedia with the TV. For instance, it is possible for an Android compatible tablet or smartphone to interact and control the TV while also giving the option to share files with a laptop or even watch a downloaded series or a movie on the large screen. Overall, this type of setup gives a simple gateway to get the internet on the TV.

Great price

The cost of upgrading a standard TV to benefit from all the possibilities of Android is relatively cheap compared to buying a smart TV. Plus, the combined standard TV and Android TV box can offer a lot more than a standalone smart TV.

Regular updates

The Android operating system is updated on a regular basis, which means the latest version of a game, application, or system is always available. Plus, this is usually done automatically so there is no need to keep searching for updates when logged into the app store. This is significantly more convenient than a smart TV which can take a while to receive updates, especially when every brand of TV needs to have its own update created and released.

All in all, the Android TV Box makes it possible to enjoy the connectivity and versatility of Android on a standard TV set up.



Source by Leo Eigenberg

Android Application Development: A Beginner’s Guide

So, your mind is embedded with creativity to build a thirst quenching app for the users. Some great pictures coming in your mind where you can see unsurpassed downloads? Where are you stuck? Is it in learning to code a successful Android Application?

Learning is a never-ending process and if you have that hunger in you, no task is unreachable. Android Application Development can be a daunting task, especially if you are a beginner. Lots of in-depth knowledge is required to start on with the development process. Some of the terms which you might not be even familiar with pops up but special thanks to Google, which makes our task way easier. Take a deep sigh of relief and fasten your seatbelt for a big and a bumpy coding ahead.

Step 1: Selection of Operating System

An Operating System is the most important software that runs on a computer. It is a medium of communication between the programmer and the computer itself. Proper selection of OS (Operating System) depends upon the scope of your project. There is three major OS ruling the Internet world- Linux, Windows, and Mac.

Linux is the preferred OS by most of the developers, but if you are new to it, go for Windows Operating System. Once the selection has been done, you can go on to the next step of installation of the Android Studio.

Step 2: Downloading and Installing Android Studio

Android Studio is the most used ‘Integrated Development Environment’ owned by Google. IDE is a platform where you can see the codes that you write and view the results there itself. After downloading the Android Studio, you can just finish off the installation process to see a screen where you can run your codes.

A common editor can also be used to run the codes, but why to ignore the specialty of this IDE? It is specifically designed to code and Android Application.

Step 3: Downloading the Java Development Kit (JDK)

After the Android Studio has been downloaded, the next important software is the JDK. The programming language which will be used to develop the Android app will be JAVA. Therefore, to use the Android Studio, JDK needs to be installed which can be downloaded here. Follow the instructions carefully to install. Once it has been done, your Android Studio is ready to be launched.

Another deciding factor is the UI in which you want to see the output of your code. There are two options open for you- Emulator or the Real Time Device.

An Android Emulator is an Android Virtual Device which will look exactly the same as your Android device and can be used to run and test your code. If you have opted to test your code on a Real-Time Device, the Driver supporting it needs to be installed again.

Step 4: Starting your First Project

You are all set to start your new Android Studio Project. Enter the name of the project you are all the way waiting for and after successful completion, you can upload it to Google Play Store.

Naming your project should be smart enough because this will be the file which all the users will be seeing. While thinking about the application, you might have decided the platform on which it shall run, meaning; Phone or Tablet.

Step 5: The Starting Page for the Final Project

Once the app you are making, opens, you can see a message saying- “Hello World”. This is the smallest program which all the developers make while learning a new technology. From this, you can start coding your desired project in mind. It can be a Job Listing App or a Cab Booking app or maybe a Book Store even.

Finally Jumping into the Reality

Not all apps become successful and get great reviews. A bit of marketing along with User-friendly experience is something which needs to be focused the most. Also, JAVA is a language which requires a deep sense of knowledge. Practicing is the best possible way to come out with flying colors.



Source by Shikha Ranjan

How to Select the Best Android Tablet

In the age of smart phones and tablets, Android powered devices have successfully managed to carve a unique identity for them. All the Android powered devices are famous for their user- friendly interface as well as the cheap apps and games available with them. Though these apps were already a part of many smart phones that came before Android, these were expensive enough that not everyone was able to afford them. With the introduction of Android powered smart phones and tablets in the market, this entire range of high end games as well as apps became more accessible to the common masses.

Android tablets have an advantage over other tablets available in the market. These tablets are powered with one of the most powerful and portable operating systems available today i.e. Android itself. These are highly customizable as well. The reliability as well as powerful features provided by Android is the reason why some of the automobile manufacturers in the world are also interested in it, so that they can find something useful and engaging for their customers.

Specifically speaking of Android tablets, it is a known fact that a whole new range of tablets have exploded in the digital market. Apart from this, the new range of applications and games that accompany these tablets are also commendable. However, all these choices can put people in a huge dilemma. To make it easier for everyone to easily and wisely invest in an Android tablet, below are some factors which should be kept in mind before investing in an Android powered tablet. In order to make a wise decision, scroll down and take a look at some of the points to be kept in mind before buying an Android tablet.

1. Purpose/ Usage of tablet

Interestingly, a wide range of tablets are available under the Android platform. These range from utility tablets for grownups to the user friendly and educative tablets for kids. The Kid’s Safe Tablet is especially designed for kids so as to assist them in various educative programs involved in their curriculum. It can be used for the purpose of playing games and solving puzzles as well. Also, there are the usual bigger and smarter tablets meant for grownups. These tablets are as efficient as a full- fledged laptop.

The perks of choosing separate tablets for you and your kids is that it will certainly reduce the wear and tear which kids often leave on their parent’s tablets. So, the first step is to determine the purpose for which you are planning to invest in an Android tablet.

2. Size of the tablet

After determining the purpose of investing in an Android tablet, the next step is to decide the size of the tablet. Luckily, Android powered tablets are available in a variety of sizes. One of the most interesting as well as advantageous fact about a tablet is that it is compact in size. The sleek design and smart built of a tablet is what makes them easy to carry and look after. While it is impossible to carry a PC around and since laptops are huge in size, tablets are what come to everyone’s rescue.

The 7 inch tablets from Android are way cheaper than many other tablets available in the market. But if you are interested in playing games and using apps on your tablet, those 10 inch tablets are simply perfect for you. While smaller tablets are easy to carry around, bigger ones have their share of advantages as well. For instance, watching movies and playing games is something that can be conveniently achieved on a big tablet. Since Android tablets can be highly customised, bigger tablets make the whole experience more enjoyable and mesmerising for the users. So, the second factor to be kept in mind while choosing the right Android powered tablet is the size of the tablet.

3. The right Android operating system

Like iOS, various versions of the Android operating system are also available. All these versions of Android have their own set of features. Starting from the very first version of Android i.e. Android 1.5 (Cup Cake), there are 8 more versions available. The most recently launched version of Android is the Android 4.4 (Kit Kat). It is entirely the buyer’s decision that which version of Android he/ she wants in his/ her tablet. Accordingly, their tablet will be performing all the functions which are offered within the scope of that particular version of Android.

Moreover, there are certain applications as well as games which are unique to each version and they may/ may not be upgradable to the higher ones. Hence, every buyer should be cautious while buying a tablet with Android 2.3 or below. The reason behind this is that these versions do not support Flash. It is advised to choose the appropriate version of Android wisely. This can be done based on the user’s preferences as well as the reasons behind buying a tablet.

4. The right manufacturer

Looking at the popularity and fan following of Android tablets in the market, there are few very potentially powerful tablet manufacturers in the digital world today. The dilemma arises because each of these tablets is worth putting your hands on. Manufacturers like Sony, Google, Samsung, etc have emerged as equally powerful suppliers of Android powered tablets in the world.

However, it may not be that difficult to choose between these tablets. The reason behind this is that each of these manufacturers has some additional features and may function differently as well. Hence, the only way to zero in on any Android tablet is by being sure about the features and specifications that you expect to be there in your tablet.

5. What’s your budget?

The cost of an Android tablet depends on the version of the Android operating system installed as well as the features offered by it. The various factors which contribute in the final price of a tablet include the operating system, features, built, design, utility as well as the size. While smaller tablets are definitely cheaper than the bigger ones, it solely depends on the user’s requirements and budget.

6. Does your tablet connect to the Android market?

Sadly, not every Android powered tablet can be connected to the online Android market. This is because Google does not have much control on Android. Once a new version of Android is released to the masses, there is nothing that Google can do. But Google certainly has the control over the entire Android market. Hence, older versions of Android such as Android 2.2 and below will never connect to the Android market. No doubt some apps will be available to you, but the majority of utility apps and games will be far out of your reach.

You must be wondering about the significance of buying an Android tablet if you cannot have access to all the apps and games in the Android market. Hence, this is another important factor to be kept in mind while buying any Android powered tablet.

7. Tablets may/ may not require a data plan

All Android tablets can be either sold with Wi-Fi connectivity or with 3G/ 4G wireless data access. Often it is seen that these tablets are sold at a discount price because of their collaboration with any cellular service provider. Before investing in any Android tablet, check if you are covered under the 2 years of payment over the price for which you are buying your tablet. Also, check the amount of data that you will be provided under this plan. It is always advised to go for a plan which is expandable in future.

8. Say no to Modified Androids

Similar to the modifications brought in Android user interfaces in different devices by their manufacturers, modifications can be brought in Android tablets as well. Often manufacturers state that it is a wonderful thing, but it also has some disadvantages.

The disadvantage is that these modified versions often act differently from their real versions. This may pose a difficult situation for people using the modified version of Android. Hence, you should always go for the real and original version of Android.

Investing in the right Android tablet is surely a difficult decision to make. But once you invest in the right tablet, there will be no looking back for you.



Source by Varun Kumar Saini

Take Away From Google I / O 2013 – All Androids Are Equal!

Introduction

Time was when Google developer conferences buzzed around Google Maps, Web tool kit and so on. But from the last conference on the Limelight was on Android, and Chrome in that order. Perhaps the humongous opportunity resting in smartphones has sunk deep into Google. A fact acknowledged by Larry Page himself when he quipped that he would like to run the company via his smartphone.

Google has bought to integrate its other products with Android and update them in Android without having to update Android to match them in compatibility.

Updates

As mentioned in the previous paragraph, Android aficionados do see a silver lining out of the limited Android updates. Blogs are rife with how features introduced from this edition onwards do not needlessly need an update in the OS. It provides fodder for agreement as the basic premise for changing an OS 'version is to enable it to play all the applications, be it ancient or futuristic. The various versions and configurations (of individual mobile hardware companies like Samsung, HTC, Sony etc) of Android were creating considerable firewalls to updating even the proprietary Google apps; apps that provide the quintessential Android experience. Google via its feature update, effectively tackles the problem of fragmentation as Google+, Gmail, Google Maps, Google Play, apps that are present in Android from versions Froyo onwards a well as Google Music All access that is all in versions Froyo onwards without need of an update. It sees the issue of fragmentation has been hopefully nailed.

Android Studio : this update does have the name android stamped on it! Meaning, it is Android specific. News is that Google plans to introduce Android Studio to replace the existing Eclipse developer environment for Android apps. Google collaborated with JetBrains to create the Android Studio. Of course this development has some loose ends to tie up, yet Google feels this IDE when launched would help Android developers increase their productivity. Here's how it could help:

  • It combines capabilities of Maven and Ant to build flexible and variedly flavored solutions.
  • Excellent code editing capabilities including finding inline resources and Android specific customizations. It is boosted by advanced editor UI that enables drag-drop of widgets, simulate output view in different hardware configurations and even preview while editing in XML.
  • Provides deep analytical capability to identify all sorts of bugs
  • Provided wizards based on preset templates and also access to other Google services.
  • Provides for easy migration of projects from Eclipse (as export) or import into Studio (of existing Eclipse IDE projects).

Google has, like Android OS, made Android Studio free and open source which could be the sweetener.

Google Play : Android developers can use the Google Play services to procure the desired APIs to construct maps, games or social media (read Google+) on Android devices (mobiles or tablets).

Gaming : entertainment is moving to handheld devices by droves putting a premium on providing the same user experience as in computer / gaming console. Google has stepped up the user experience by introducing the following features:

  • Leaderboards: a maximum of 100 leaderboards, both public and social, is provided to enable developers engage users by letting them compare scores with other players. Leaderboards are created automatically for daily, weekly, monthly or customized versions.
  • Rewards system: developers can reward users for engaging in the game by providing standard or incremental achievements that can be viewed in a user interface. The can use the developer consoles to control the achievements.
  • Google provides the Cloud Saving APIs to save game status and settings on cloud.
  • Developers can allow users to invite other players to the game or play with random users with the maximum limit pegged at 4.

Google facilitates the development of location aware apps by providing the following APIs:

Geofencing APIs : this API is used to define geographical boundaries. It also provides the following options:

  • to create alert filters for customers exiting a particular area
  • alter updates of location in response to locomotion habit (like walking, riding or driving) of the customer (see Activity recognition API )
  • add or delete geographic boundaries

Fused location provider: this API uses underlying schema to provide the apt results to your query on locations, even complex level queries. It is quick, versatile and utilizes less battery power.

Activity recognition provider : this API uses power sensors to detect the customer's current activity, for example, driving, walking, riding idling etc. This is used in tandem with the Geofencing API to provide the apt updates to the customer.

Single Sign-on via Google+ : accounting for the fact that users change mobile devices often and that these devices may run different OS, Google provides the API to sign in via Google+ in any device. This obliterates the need to make services like Google Wallet, Games, Plus device specific. There are libraries for these services that respond to the auto sign request using their method.

Google Cloud Messaging : Google has made it possible to register apps using its Single Method. It also provides for messaging to 3rd party servers via its bi-directional messaging (XMPP) using Cloud Connection Server. Users can synchronize notifications across devices using Google's APIs for user notification.

Google Play Developer Console : Google has been supporting its huge Android developer community and this year's conference added the fillip to it.

App Translation Service : The localization support team from Google enables you to avail translation services for a nominal fee and post the strings to be translated in the language of your choice. If required it prompts the apt localization sting in the app graphics, APK or the About product sections. This eventually helps developers reach out to a wider audience.

Analytics and Monetization : Keep a track on the performance of an app just become easier. Google Play and Google Analytics provides complementary services like app views and downloads and engagement metrics.

Google has introduced the order status API to let developers view the order status of an in-app from their servers. It has also decided not to charge test accounts for in-app test purchases.

Alpha and Beta testing and Staged Rollouts : Google has added the alpha-beta testing to let developers split their apps into two alternatives, alpha and beta, and get them tested by different user groups. If needed, testers for Google+ can also be added to test these versions.

Developers can sinceforth roll-out updates only, to their apps to a batch of users to gauge their feedback. Developers can set the percentage of users who would be using the update.

Verdict

Perhaps for those expecting Android only chants at the Google I / O 2013, it might be a dampener. But for those familiar with the maverick that Google is will vouch the shrewd way it's gone about indulging Android community. Updates to Google Play, its services, launch of the Android Studio, cloud messaging and ability to sign into Google services sans OS or hardware requirements are significant game changers. In short, it is about updating features sans the need to update OS.

Google's I / O 2013 was an Android winner, in a hush hush way!

* Androider = a fan of Android who swears by it anytime, anywhere!



Source by Maheshwar Antony

Tips for iPhone and Android Users to Send Group Messages

It seems that the best and the most silent way of communication in the new generation is text messages. Even though there are numerous apps for messaging and various messaging services but this is the simplest and most convenient way of communication. It is personal, fast and the most efficient way of communication. Your SMS would reach the recipient regardless of any chat service installed, as there is no such hassle. Even when the recipient is not available the message would reach as soon as the network is up and running. However, many times it is more convenient to send group messages especially when you want to communicate same message to many people. Sending SMS related to any update, a movie date or a lunch appointment with your buddies or other group of people.

Even though you have some options like using third-party apps for creating groups and creating group messages. Viber and WhatsApp are some good examples that come for free. However, if you already own an Android or a iPhone then it would be easier for your to create group texts without installing another program. Apple iOS 6 and Android Galaxy SIII versions for this message.

Let us find out tips that will help you send group messages, first start with Android Smartphone

Step 1.

When you are using Android Smartphone then you can easily manage group messages by initially setting up group contacts. First you need to go to Contacts for initiating the process. Tap Apps->Contacts or go to Contacts directly from your home screen.

Step 2.

Tap Groups to access the Groups of your phone. However, everything depends upon the version of your Android, as you might be able to create groups via Add Groups options. Tap Menu to access Create Groups options.

Step 3.

Now is the time to give a distinct name or unique identity to your group that you want to create. You can use the name of a team like Red Sox. After entering the name Save to finish.

Step 4.

Now that your new group is created you need to add people to it from your contact list. If you are using Galaxy SIII then you can first access your group and then add relevant contacts to it. This can be done by selecting each person from your contact list and tapping the Add contact button.

Step 5.

Go to messaging app-> Contacts here you have the option to select all or make specific selection that you can utilize as a subset. Tap Done when you are through with it or add more recipients, construct your message and then hit the Send button.

Sending Group Messages through iPhone

Step 1.

First of all you need to know that there is no such facility in your iPhone even in iOS 7 for group messaging. therefore, you need to go ahead by creating groups within Messages app before constructing any message. Initial step would be to launch Messages app.

Step 2.

In the to field tap the + icon this will reveal your contacts list. Now start adding your contacts one by one adding them to the To field. For adding specific contacts use search functionality, this comes handy when you have lots of contacts.

Step 3.

Construct your message and hit Send when you are done. This message reaches to all the recipients and they will be able to even chat with each other.

Step 4.

You can even create a group of contacts. This is only possible at http://www.iCloud.com. Use your Apple ID for logging in and then create your group, drag and drop contacts into this new group.

Step 5.

Enable the iCloud to sync your iPhone to it by Settings-> iCloud. However, you will need to individually select contacts to be added in your list.

Step 6.

If you are looking for other options than the most obvious app solutions then you can opt to download Text2Group and Easy Group. This will help you to get past any limitations that your iPhone has and you will be easily able to send group messages to your contacts.

All the above tips will surely help you send group messages to your contacts without hassle. It hardly matters if you are using Android or iPhone there is always an easy way to get past the hassle of individual messages.



Source by Polly Uma Simpson