Cloud computing’s all the rage these days. We’ve all heard the normal spiel about its benefits; cloud services let you reduce your reliance on on-site admins, cloud services let you access data from anywhere, blah blah blah. But did you know that tapping into the cloud for your email services can be up to 80 times more efficient than hosting servers in-house? We didn’t either, until we got our grubby little paws on a new Google report that claimed just that.
Google placed its bets on a cloud computing-filled future with the Chromebook, a nifty little line that advance’s Google’s goal to have everybody’s data available anywhere, anytime. While it’s a wonderful concept, accessing the Web anywhere, anytime requires Internet access that’s available anywhere, anytime. Frankly, we’re not quite there yet. Google admitted this fact (and helped make Chrome OS and Google Apps a little more useful) with today’s announcement of the return of an offline mode for Gmail, Google Docs and Google Calendar.
When it comes to cloud-based productivity, Google’s got it going on. With services like Gmail, Google Docs, Google Calendar and Google+, staying productive, in touch and up-to-date has never been easier. For those of us that rely heavily on what Google has on offer, it’s never been more of a pain to find what we’re looking for. While Mountain View makes it a snap to create tons of useful data with their services, keeping track of that data isn’t anywhere near what we’d call a breeze. Fortunately, CloudMagic makes taming cloud-based information simple and pain-free.
We didn’t get a lot of news out of the annual Microsoft Global Exchange sales meeting last week, but it appears one sneaky attendee has leaked an interesting sales video. Redmond is prepping their representatives to sell Office 365 over Google Apps, and the “Gmail Man” video is one tool being used to rally the troops. Microsoft isn’t willing to own up to the video, but most pundits believe it is real.
Google+ is officially on the market, and it’s being released in small doses in the form of invites. Much like how Gmail was initially spread in beta, the invite only model creates a sense of exclusivity and belonging. Facebook also used this method to market their network to college students, and eventually became part of the global definition of social media. Whether Google+ mirrors this success is anyone’s guess, but until that time it is time to get to know the features.
As part of the ongoing beauty- and experience-enhancement drive that Google announced earlier this week, the company is working on a series of interface updates for Gmail, which will be rolled out in a graduated manner over the next few months. The web colossus today launched a couple of new themes to give you a taste of what’s to follow.
Google earlier this week said hundreds of Gmail accounts were compromised by hackers in China, including accounts belonging to U.S. government officials and military personnel. This was followed up by a report in the Washington Post claiming one of the affected Gmail accounts belonged to a Cabinet-level official. Despite the reports, it might not be as bad as it initially sounded.
Google Apps are awesome. Google Docs is excellent for business and school work, Google Voice lets you check if strangers' refrigerators are running worldwide, and everyone and his one-eyed sister has a Gmail account. As it turns out, Google Apps is so full of unadulterated awesome that a lot of the older Web browsers on the market just can't keep up with all the HTML5 goodness. Rather than bend over backwards to support obsolete software, Google's kicking them to the curb.
Google on Wednesday issued a warning that hackers based in China weaseled their way into hundreds of Gmail accounts, including those of U.S. government officials, Chinese political activists, officials in several Asian countries (mostly South Korea), military personnel, and journalists, among others. Every indication is that these were targeted attacks and not just random victims.
In the midst of all the NFC Google news, the search giant also announced it will be rolling out a fairly major cosmetic change to Gmail over the coming weeks. The new People widget will occupy the top right hand portion of the interface and give users quick access to contacts. The widget surfaces content available in the Google ecosystem as a sort of ambient information display.