J. Murali

NetSpeak: A plethora of services from Google

FILE - In this Tuesday, March 23, 2010 file photo, the Google logo is seen at the Google headquarters in Brussels. On Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010 the European Commission said it is launching a formal investigation into whether Google has abused its dominant market position in online searches. The EU's competition watchdog says Tuesday that the probe follows complaints from other online search providers that Google put them at a disadvantage in both its paid and unpaid search results. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo, File)   | Photo Credit: Virginia Mayo

This week NetSpeak takes a fresh look at some of the latest offerings from Google.

Google's dominance over the online world seems to be insurmountable. Aside the wide variety of search services from its flagship search product pack (web search, video search, blog search and the like), Google offers numerous other services as well (Google mail, Browser, Google Apps and the like). Even in the fastest growing mobile web segment, Google is surging ahead.

The on-line world is now agog with the news that Android, the open source mobile operating system from Google, has become a major platform for mobile devices ( >http://www.gpsbusinessnews.com/Canalys-Android-is-World-Leading-Smartphone-Platform_a2775. html).

The staggering number of mobile applications being released for Android-based smart-phones further underlines this trend. NetSpeak will deal on this topic in one of the forthcoming editions of this column.

An interesting feature of the Google's product ecosystem is that its constituents interact with mutual synergy, making it grow in an organic manner.

This aspect is quite apparent in Chrome, the popular browser from Google. As already mentioned in an earlier column, the strength and popularity of Chrome lies in the availability of a variety of extensions that enhance its power.

Extensions meant for accessing almost all Google services with ease are in place. You may also note that the latest version of Chrome has got a feature called ‘Instant', which is similar to Google Instant.

This feature enables the browser to load a web page as soon as one starts entering its URL. Besides this, instead of a site's URL, if you are entering a search string, search results will start appearing as you type.

Google Apps marketplace

Google Apps ( >http://www.google.com/apps/) is a significant component of Google ecosystem. For those of you who are not familiar with Google Apps, it is a Google service that provides various Google products (such as gmail and google docs) on a custom domain. Anyone with a domain name can avail of this service, which is free for up to 50 uses.

Google Apps allows a domain owner to leverage Google's infrastructure and deploy Google's popular applications on his domain without incurring any additional hardware/software overhead. Google also offers ‘Google Apps Marketplace', a web-based platform meant for finding/installing third-party on-line applications that work with Google Apps' built-in application mix.

The latest development in the ‘Apps Marketplace' front is the launch of a new channel exclusively meant for the education segment ( >http://goo.gl/pdGZJ). In this category one can find several applications useful for both teachers and students.

Brainpop, a popular on-line service that creates educational content for kids is a good example.

The service offers animated educational movies on a range of topics within Science, Technology, Social studies, English and so on. Although Brainpop is not a free service, for ‘Google Apps' users it is available for free till March 11, 2011.

He can be contacted at: jmurali@gmail.com

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