Announcing Google Cloud Next 2018

Announcing Google Cloud Next 2018

Google Cloud Next ’18 is coming! Mark your calendars for July 24-27, 2018 at Moscone Center in San Francisco.

Google Cloud Next is where customers, partners, developers, influencers and the greater global cloud community get inspired and learn. Together, we’re working to make the cloud useful and accessible to everyone.

Dive deep into Google Cloud technology through hundreds of breakout sessions, code labs, demos and hands-on training, covering everything from infrastructure to devices, and security to machine learning. You’ll get the chance to connect with the entire Google Cloud team, including our engineers, product leadership, developer advocates and more to unlock new opportunities for your business.

At Next ’17, more than 250 Google speakers and 70+ customer speakers presented at 200 breakout sessions. We made 100 announcements at Next ’17, and we’re gearing up for more big news next year. Next ’18 will feature tracks that encompass all aspects of our Google Cloud portfolio: application development, containerization, collaboration & productivity, data & analytics, infrastructure & operations, hybrid cloud, machine learning & artificial intelligence, maps, security, mobility & devices and much more. Be on the lookout for information on how to register coming in March 2018.

Know someone we can all learn from, or want to contribute yourself? We’re actively soliciting proposals for speaking sessions that will educate and engage attendees. If you have an interesting idea or expertise that you would like to share at Next ’18, please submit your proposal by January 26, 2018. The earlier the better.

We’re excited to create an inclusive space that brings people together, fosters collaboration and inspires innovation at Next ’18. We can’t wait to see you in July!

AdWords Express helps small businesses grow online in 14 new countries

AdWords Express helps small businesses grow online in 14 new countries

AdWords Express was created in 2011 to make advertising on Google accessible to businesses owners without advanced online advertising skills or the resources to hire an expert. AdWords Express has since expanded and, as of this month, is available in 14 new countries and 10 new languages. This expansion follows a recent launch that allows your business to prioritize ad goals, whether those are customer calls, visits to your store, or actions to your website.

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AdWords Express launched in these 14 countries. 

Gourmet treats become a local hit in Ukraine with AdWords Express

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Earlier this year, Daryna Pletnyova was looking for a fruit bouquet for her father’s birthday but couldn’t find a local shop in Kiev that could make one. After buying the supplies and arranging her own fruit bouquet, she decided she loved arranging so much that she started Tasty Bouquets, which makes custom bouquets out of gourmet treats, like sausage.

Daryna heard about AdWords Express at a small business event and decided to give it a try. She had used online advertising tools before but found they didn’t drive actual sales. “With AdWords Express though, I only spent 15 to 20 minutes setting up three ads,” says Daryna, “and I got my first calls from customers the next day.”

Advertisers like Daryna are getting results based on their advertising goal. Since Daryna’s goal is to receive calls, AdWords Express optimizes her ads to deliver more calls, not just clicks. “Now my phone is always ringing, and I’m selling 2-3 bouquets every day,” she says.

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Daryna used Google’s free website builder to create a landing page for her ads

The web isn’t just a place for businesses with big budgets or advertising expertise. With AdWords Express now available in 42 countries and 41 languages, we’re excited to help more small businesses across the world reach new customers online.

You can start advertising on Google today by signing up here.

New government removals and National Security Letter data

New government removals and National Security Letter data

Since 2010, we’ve shared regular updates in our Transparency Report about the effects of government and corporate policies on users’ data and content. Our goal has always been to make this information as accessible as possible, and to continue expanding this report with new and relevant data.

Today, we’re announcing three updates to our Transparency Report. We’re expanding the National Security Letters (NSL) section, releasing new data on requests from governments to remove content from services like YouTube and Blogger, and making it easier for people to share select data and charts from the Transparency Report.

National Security Letters

Following the 2015 USA Freedom Act, the FBI started lifting indefinite gag restrictions—prohibitions against publicly sharing details—on particular NSLs. Last year, we began publishing NSLs we have received where, either through litigation or legislation, we have been freed of these nondisclosure obligations. We have added a new subsection to the NSL page of the Transparency Report where we publish these letters. We also added letters to the collection, and look to update this section regularly.

Government requests for content removals

As usage of our services increases, we remain committed to keeping internet users safe, working with law enforcement to remove illegal content, and complying with local laws. During this latest reporting period, we’ve continued to expand our work with local law enforcement. From January to June 2017, we received 19,176 requests from governments around the world to remove 76,714 pieces of content. This was a 20 percent percent increase in removal requests over the second half of 2016.

Making our Transparency Report easier to use

Finally, we’ve implemented a new “deep linking” feature that makes it easier to bookmark and share specific charts in the Transparency Report. Sorting data by country, time period, and other categories now generates a distinct web address at the top of your browser window. This allows you to create a link that will show, for example, just government removals data in France, by Google product, for the first half of 2015. We hope this will make it easier for citizens to find and reference information in the report, and for journalists and researchers to highlight specific details that they may be examining as well.

By continuing to make updates like these, we aim to spark new conversations about transparency, accountability and the role of governments and companies in the flow of information online.

Celebrating and empowering women in mobile gaming with CHANGE THE GAME

Celebrating and empowering women in mobile gaming with CHANGE THE GAME

Together, Android and Google Play bring millions of games to more than one billion people in 190 countries, making games accessible to almost everyone. As we continue to create entertainment experiences that cater to each individual person; and with more people gaming on mobile devices than ever before, there’s an opportunity to be even more inclusive—starting with women.

There’s little existing research about women and mobile gaming—so we partnered with Newzoo to learn more about the experiences and perceptions of female mobile players in the U.S. Our study found that 65% of women play mobile games, making-up half of all mobile gamers. In fact, female mobile gamers play more frequently than men with 43% of of them playing more than five days a week compared to just 38% of men.

Despite the fact that women are playing mobile games like never before, only 24.8% of people in the industry identify as women or transgender. This has an impact on women’s behaviors and perceptions of mobile games—for example, we found that the majority of female gamers think that only 30% of those games are actually made for them. Additionally, we found that women are less likely than men to explore multiple genres, talk with friends about mobile games, or identify as a “gamer.”

To tackle this issue, we’re launching CHANGE THE GAME, a new Google Play initiative promoting diversity in games, celebrating all women who play games, and empowering the next generation of game-makers through ongoing research, development programs, and partnerships. The program includes:

  • An interactive experience shining light on the relationship between women and mobile games in the U.S. 
  • A short film celebrating the diversity of women who play mobile games and inviting all women to be part of the game
  • A collection highlighting games with great female protagonists on Google Play’s Indie corner 

This builds on our work to inspire teen girls with the power of games through Wonder Woman, our support of Girls Make Games and the launch of a mobile game development program for emerging game designers. While moving the needle won’t be easy, we hope our commitments to change the game will influence long-term change for women as both players and creators.

More great stuff to watch and a holiday sale on popular Daydream apps

More great stuff to watch and a holiday sale on popular Daydream apps

With cold weather outside and the holidays fast approaching, now’s the perfect time to take a moment and kick back with Daydream. We’re launching an update to make it easier to discover great content both in and out of VR, plus loads of new VR experiences to keep you entertained.

Find great VR content easily

With the latest Daydream app, you can now see what’s new and trending on the Google Play store in VR. And when you’re on the go without your headset, you can still search for apps and games, or explore content categories that refresh weekly right in the app on your phone.

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Watch immersive VR videos

There’s more and more VR content available all the time. From music and comedy to travel, check out some of our recent favorites.

Go behind the scenes with your favorite musicians

  • Why Don’t We: Step inside the house of Why Don’t We in VR180. Take a behind-the-scenes tour with band members as they walk you through their house and talk about the milestones and memories made in their house, including songs recorded, deals signed and videos shot.

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Looking for a laugh?


  • The Confessional – Episode 4: Hear from Judd Apatow in the latest episode of “The Confessional,” a series where today’s biggest comedy stars share intimate (and funny) stories from their lives in a virtual confessional booth.

See new sights and meet extraordinary people

  • Discovery TRVLR – Continents 1 to 4: Travel around the world—starting with Auckland, Hanoi, Mexico City and Yerevan—and connect with personalities and adventurers across the globe.

  • Female Planet – Episode 2: Discover the world of Inna Braverman, co-founder of Eco Wave Power, a company that converts wave power into usable energy.

Looking for cutting-edge VR creations?

Explore new apps—and get favorites on sale

Developers have been busy building some awesome new experiences for Daydream. Here are some of our favorites:

A timeless classic now in VR

  • Rez Infinite: Blast through waves of enemies and giant transforming bosses, with colors and sounds that sync and blend to the beat of the app’s techno soundtrack.

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Coming soon to Daydream

  • ASTEROIDS!: Following the initial teaser, the highly-anticipated full-length film will be launching next week. From the director of Madagascar comes the follow-up episode to the Emmy award-winning film INVASION!. The film follows the journey of quirky aliens Mac and Cheez (voiced by Elizabeth Banks), and their sidekick Peas as they traverse the challenges of space.
  • Flutter VR: Explore the beauty of the Amazonian rainforest as you discover real butterfly species and see the environment change from day to night and rain to sunshine as you meet and discover new creatures. 
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Some original VR favorites are now 50% off for a limited time, too (discounts valid 12/7/17 to 12/14/17). Explore imaginary worlds with Beartopia and So Let Us Melt, embark on new adventures with Hunters Gate and Spark of Light, and hone your reflexes with Ultrawings, Drift, The Arcslinger, and Fishing Star VR.

We have lots more new features and exciting experiences in the works for 2018. If you’re new to Daydream, or you haven’t tried it in a while, now’s a great time to jump in. And remember, you can always bring your friends and family along on your VR adventures by casting what you see to a TV.

Simplifying your Organization’s Digital Transformation with Easy Pay

Simplifying your Organization’s Digital Transformation with Easy Pay

Get access to the latest Cisco innovations through an easy-to-use subscription bundle Explaining the complexity of digital transformation is actually pretty simple: organizations need the latest technology to function at the highest possible level and stay competitive. Sounds easy enough, right? However, addressing digital transformation can quickly become challenging and convoluted when weighing various business […]

Cloud Unfiltered Podcast, Episode 29: The State of OpenStack, and a Few Other Things, with Ben Kepes

Cloud Unfiltered Podcast, Episode 29: The State of OpenStack, and a Few Other Things, with Ben Kepes

He’s an ultra-marathoner, a highly respected tech industry reporter, and an angel investor (he’s not at all fond of that last label for its sheer pretentiousness, but I can’t think of any other way to describe what he does). He works a lot, but doesn’t really work for anyone—except himself. All of which makes Ben […]

From Switch to slime, here are the trending toys this holiday season

From Switch to slime, here are the trending toys this holiday season

As we enter the holiday gift-giving season, parents are thinking about how to surprise their kids with the coolest new toys. For toy stores, December 23rd is the busiest day of the holiday season, which often means braving the cold in the final hours before closing, scouring the crowded aisles—and hopefully nabbing something before it sells out.

But you can avoid that this year.  Craft your game plan early and shop with a purpose, using our list of the top gifts trending on Google Search. 

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Video games climb the leaderboard

Whether they’re searching for that new game or the must-have console, holiday shoppers are out in full force to feed their video game fanaticism. And some cities are looking to deck the halls—and their chairs—with a few more bells and whistles to enhance their holiday gaming experience: In New Orleans, Jacksonville, Miami, and Birmingham, gaming chairs (which often include speakers, cupholders, and more) are in the top 10 toys wishlists, in addition to the Call of Duty PS4 game and Nintendo 2DS, Sony PS4 Pro, Nintendo Switch, and Microsoft Xbox One S consoles that are trending nationwide.

And  the enthusiasm for video games doesn’t die down when Christmas is over. Last year, December 26th was the biggest shopping day in December— about just as big as Black Friday—for video game stores.

Tech toys are trending

Attention-grabbing gizmos and gadgets top this year’s list of toys. Kidibuzz, a hand-held smart device that lets kids message friends, play games—and yes, take selfies—has been trending nationwide, but it’s especially popular on the East Coast. And while searches for drones, like the DJI Spark Drone have been flying up the charts across the U.S. over the past two years, searches are the highest in New York and Los Angeles.

And last but not least, virtual pets are making a comeback. Kids are already going bananas over Fingerlings, mini robotic monkeys that blink, talk, and sing, and their popularity shows no signs of slowing down: Since their launch in August, searches for these must-have toys have grown almost 6x overall.

Toys you’ll want to #follow

This Christmas, the kids want more likes, and they’re searching for gifts to make sure their social media game is on point. Both the new LOL surprise toys and old-school slime are taking over social media, with thousands of YouTube and other social channels dedicated to reviewing these addictive gifts. The Midwest is home to the slimiest searches, where the interest for “slime” is the strongest. And New York loves a good surprise: they searched for LOL Surprise the most, with search volume growing about 50% as we approach the final holiday shopping weeks.

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Slime is trending this year.

Looking for local trends?

For more insights behind this season’s trends, check out the Shopping Insights tool to explore how various toys and gifts are trending in your region.

Trending search insights are based on increases in product popularity over the two week period leading up to December.

Your Search questions, answered selfie-style on Google

Your Search questions, answered selfie-style on Google

Whether you watch them on TV, listen to them on a podcast, or read about them in a magazine, you spend a lot of time wondering about the people who inspire you. Personally, I’ve always wanted to know if my favorite actor Will Ferrell can really play the drums. Now in the U.S., you can find answers to questions about notable people on mobile Search, and they’re coming directly from the source.

When you search for your favorite personalities, whether they’re rising stars or well-known celebs, their answers will appear in the form of selfie-style videos with a uniquely personal, authentic and delightful touch.

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We’re piloting this feature on mobile with answers from Priyanka Chopra, Will Ferrell, Tracee Ellis Ross, Gina Rodriguez, Kenan Thompson, Allison Williams, Nick Jonas, Mark Wahlberg, James Franco, Seth MacFarlane, Jonathan Yeo and Dominique Ansel. Whether you’re wondering what Gina Rodriguez’s pet peeve is, what movie changed Nick Jonas’ life, or want Kenan Thompson’s input on what makes something funny, these self-recorded videos share their perspectives and answers to some of your most-asked questions.

Today’s announcement gives you a snapshot (or should we say selfie-shot) of what’s to come, but in the next few months, you may see more videos as you search for your favorite personalities. For now, pick up your phone to search for one of the people mentioned above—you just might find a surprise video answer waiting for you.