Google was in the news quite a bit this past week, with updates to their apps, changes to their Chrome browser, and tweaks to their Google Image search. Here’s a roundup of some Google news!
Chrome’s ad blocking has gone live
Google’s Chrome browser has now gone live with its limited ad blocking feature. You may remember our article from last year, which describes how the ad blocking will work. As we mentioned then, the feature works by using the Coalition for Better Ads to eliminate particularly annoying ads.
A website owner whose site has ads that don’t meet the standards set by the Coalition will receive a warning and 30 days to change their ads. If they don’t make the appropriate changes, their ads will be blocked. As The Verge notes, all the ads on the site will be blocked, not just the specific ads that go against the Coalition’s standards. Some of the types of ads that the Coalition hopes to address include ads with autoplaying video and sound, full page ads, and popups.
Of course, this won’t really replace things like AdBlock Plus. Those services block all ads, not just certain annoying ones. But if you don’t want to get another ad blocker, or if you like being able to help sites make money off their ads (as long as they’re not annoying), then Chrome’s new feature will help make things less frustrating.
Google no longer offering a “view image” button
If you’ve saved images from a Google search, you’ve probably used the “view image” button that popped up when you clicked on an image. Now that button has been removed from Google’s image search.
The button was taken down recently, and it’s certainly not to make their users happier. According to CNET, the button was removed because Getty Images (a photo website) was unhappy with how easily people could save their images. Now people on an image search only have the “visit” button available for saving an image, which requires you to find the image by loading the entire page.
This may make some photo websites feel better, but it does add an extra unwanted bit of hassle for users. Of course, you can still save photos from a Google Image search without loading the entire site. Right-clicking an image and choosing “Open image in new tab” will still load the full image. However, many people might not know this option is available. Because of this, removing the “view image” button will likely lead to more people doing what Google wants—going to the page the image is on.
Gmail Go is now out on Android
Google’s newest Go app is now out for Android devices—Gmail Go. Their Go apps are specifically designed to take up less space and use fewer resources on phones so they can be used on older phones or in places with a lower quality connection. Earlier this month, I wrote about the rollout of their YouTube Go app.
Now users can more easily use Google’s email service, Gmail. The Gmail Go app, based on their Play store description, offers all the services you typically need. You can access your different mail categories, get notifications, read emails and send replies (even offline), integrate your other email addresses, and more. But it’s still more stripped down than their full app, so it takes up less space. The Verge notes that images won’t load automatically, while TechCrunch reports that some say fewer days’ worth of emails are synced.