March 18, 2015

#PoweredByTheSun: Solar Impulse flies to Varanasi today

Solar Impulse has taken off on the third leg of its historic flight around the world - from Ahmedabad to Varanasi.


The aircraft, Si2, has already set a provisional world record for the longest solar-powered flight. It’s on track to be the first aircraft to circumnavigate the globe on solar power only.


André Borschberg, co-founder, will be in the pilot seat for the flight. From Varanasi, the SI-2 will fly to Mandalay in Myanmar.


You can follow the aircraft’s progress at the Solar Impulse website.


Posted by Samit Malkani, Brand Lead, Google India.

March 17, 2015

Zoom with a view: visit India’s stunning monuments online

[Cross posted from the Official Google APAC Blog]

Since last year, we’ve partnered with the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and other institutions to bring a comprehensive range of India’s heritage sites online, including national icons like the Taj Mahal, Safdarjung Tomb, and the Ellora Caves.  Starting today, history lovers and online explorers alike can now find new panoramic views of 31 Indian archaeological sites and monuments on Google Maps and the Google Cultural Institute. Here’s a virtual walk through of some of these stunning monuments, made possible by Street View technology:

Begin your journey at the Gateway of India, a popular starting point for tourists who wish to explore bustling Mumbai, one of India's largest cities. Pan through the imagery for a closer look at the yellow basalt stone arch, covered with intricate Gujarati-influenced latticework.



From there, hop over to the Sun Temple at Konârk, one of India’s Seven Wonders and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for a glimpse of the chariot-shaped temple and its elaborately carved stone wheels, pillars and walls.



For a flavour of India’s royal legacy, visit the Mysore Palace next, one of the country’s grandest royal palaces. Built in the Indo-Saracenic style, the Palace hosts the Mysore Dasara, which celebrated its 400th anniversary in 2010 and attracts visitors  from around the world.



Next, wander through the remains of ancient India’s highest seat of education - the Nalanda University. Learn more about the amazing discoveries uncovered during its excavation through the Archaeological Survey of India’s virtual exhibit, “Nalanda: from Mound to Monument", on the Google Cultural Institute.


Following that, roam through Karnataka’s largest temple complex: the Group of Monuments at Pattadakal, an impressive series of nine Hindu temples and a Jain sanctuary. This World Heritage Site celebrates the Chalukya dynasty, narrating stories of their bravery and valour in the battlefield.


You can also head further down south to the state of Tamil Nadu for a look at Thanjavur Temple on Street View, a fine example of Tamil architecture created during India’s Chola dynasty. The temple, dedicated to Chola emperor Rajaraja, is entirely built out of granite.


That’s just a quick tour of some of the 31 sites we’ve brought onto Google Maps and the Google Cultural Institute today by working with the ASI, as well as the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, Karnataka Department of Archaeology, Museums and Heritage, Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation. We hope exploring the new panoramic views of these important sites will help people in India and around the world discover, explore, and learn more about India’s rich heritage.

Posted by Chetan Krishnaswamy, Country Head, Public Policy at Google

March 11, 2015

#PoweredByTheSun: Solar Impulse lands in India

Solar Impulse, the solar-powered aircraft that’s on a round-the-world flight to raise awareness for clean, renewable energy, landed in Ahmedabad yesterday from Oman.
Our privately-financed Swiss aircraft hopes to achieve the first circumnavigation of the Earth by a piloted fixed-wing aircraft using only solar power.
Payerne, Switzerland: Today,Solar Impulse 2, the second single-seater solar aircraft of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg designed to take up the challenge of the first round-the-world solar flight, without any fuel in 2015, carried out its eighteenth  test flight out of the Payerne aerodrome in Switzerland. The plane flew at a high altitude. There will be several other test flights taking place in the coming months in order for this experimental machine to attain certification. They will be followed by training flights of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg later in the season still from Payerne airfield. The attempt to make the first round-the-world solar-powered flight is scheduled to start in March 2015 from Gulf area. Solar Impulse will fly, in order, over the Arabian Sea, India, Myanmar, China, the Pacific Ocean, the United States, the Atlantic Ocean and Southern Europe or North Africa before closing the loop by returning to the departure point. Landings will be made every few days to change pilots and organize public events for governments, schools and universities.
The aircraft, Solar Impulse 2, is extremely impressive. Its wingspan is only slightly less than that of an Airbus A380, but it weighs only as much as a modern car. 17,248 photovoltaic cells charge its 4 lithium-ion batteries, which in turn power 4 electronic motors. The aircraft cruises at 27,900 feet, at a speed of 90 km/h; its maximum speed is an impressive 140 km/h.
Payerne, Switzerland: Today,Solar Impulse 2, the second single-seater solar aircraft of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg designed to take up the challenge of the first round-the-world solar flight, without any fuel in 2015, carried out its first flight out of the Payerne aerodrome in Switzerland. There will be several other test flights taking place in the coming months in order for this experimental machine to attain certification. They will be followed by training flights of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg later in the season still from Payerne airfield. The attempt to make the first round-the-world solar-powered flight is scheduled to start in March 2015 from Gulf area. Solar Impulse will fly, in order, over the Arabian Sea, India, Burma, China, the Pacific Ocean, the United States, the Atlantic Ocean and Southern Europe or North Africa before closing the loop by
returning to the departure point. Landings will be made every few days to change pilots and organize public events for governments, schools and universities.
Flying by day and night, we intend to complete our historic journey in a little over 2 months.
Solar Impulse has collaborated with Google to keep us, the pilots, connected to the world all through our flight. You can follow our progress on our Google+ Page; watch exclusive content on our YouTube Channel; and join stunning Google Hangouts with us, live from mid-air.
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After a few days interacting with students, teachers, the government and the private sector in Ahmedabad, we will fly 1,075 km to Varanasi. We’d like to invite you to follow the launch LIVE on the Google India blog, and join an exclusive mid-air Google Hangout with us.
Thank you very much for your support. You can read more about the Solar Impulse project here.
Written by: Bertrand Piccard, Andre Borschberg, Co-Founders & Pilots, Solar Impulse


February 26, 2015

Android is ready for work

[Cross posted from the Official Android Blog]

Over a billion people today carry Android smartphones—devices that are more powerful than the computers we used just a few years ago.

For many, these phones have become essential tools to help us complete important work tasks like checking email, editing documents, reviewing sales pipelines and approving deals. But for the majority of workers, smartphones and tablets are underutilized in the workplace. Their business and innovation potential remain largely untapped.

Today we're announcing the Android for Work program to tap into that potential. With a group of partners, we're helping businesses bring more devices to work by securing, managing and innovating on the Android platform.

Android for Work features four key technology components:

  • Work profiles – We’ve built on the default encryption, enhanced SELinux security enforcement and multi-user support in Android 5.0, Lollipop to create a dedicated work profile that isolates and protects work data. IT can deploy approved work apps right alongside their users' personal apps knowing their sensitive data remains secured. People can use their personal apps knowing their employer only manages work data and won’t erase or view their personal content.
  • Android for Work app – For devices running Ice Cream Sandwich through Kitkat, or that don’t run work profiles natively, we’ve created the Android for Work app. The app, which delivers secure mail, calendar, contacts, documents, browsing and access to approved work apps, can be completely managed by IT.
  • Google Play for Work – Google Play for Work allows businesses to securely deploy and manage apps across all users running Android for Work, simplifying the process of distributing apps to employees and ensuring that IT approves every deployed app.
  • Built-in productivity tools – For everyday business tasks, we’ve created a suite of business apps for email, contacts and calendar, which supports both Exchange and Notes and provides document editing capabilities for documents, spreadsheets and presentations.

We’re joined by a number of partners as part of the Android for Work program, including many familiar names within the Android ecosystem:


Our partners bring IT:
  • Consistent management – Enterprise mobility management (EMM) providers integrate with standardized management APIs to create a simple way to manage all Android devices, new and old, from one dashboard. All Android for Work capabilities are delivered through EMM partners, with more providers available soon.
  • Secure business apps – Software vendors and developers can create a single version of any Google Play app that can be securely deployed to any Android device without alterations or wrapping. And they can create standard management configurations that allow IT to apply policies per app.
  • Innovative devices – Android smartphone and tablet makers are a key part of the Android for Work program, as they create devices and experiences that add additional value for customers.

Together with a wide range of management, application and device makers, we believe the Android for Work program provides businesses and workers with the choice and flexibility they need to get things done at work.

Learn more by visiting google.com/work/android.

Posted by Rajen Sheth, Director of Product Management, Android and Chrome for Work

February 19, 2015

Google Science Fair 2015: what will you try?

[Cross posted from the Official Google for Education Blog]

Science is about observing and experimenting. It’s about exploring unanswered questions, solving problems through curiosity, learning as you go and always trying again.

That’s the spirit behind the fifth annual Google Science Fair, kicking off today. Together with LEGO Education, National Geographic, Scientific American and Virgin Galactic, we’re calling on all young researchers, explorers, builders, technologists and inventors to try something ambitious. Something imaginative, or maybe even unimaginable. Something that might just change the world around us.



From now through May 18, students around the world ages 13-18 can submit projects online across all scientific fields, from biology to computer science to anthropology and everything in between. Prizes include  $100,000 in scholarships and classroom grants from Scientific American and Google, a National Geographic Expedition to the Galapagos, an opportunity to visit LEGO designers at their Denmark headquarters, and the chance to tour Virgin Galactic’s new spaceship at their Mojave Air and Spaceport. This year we’re also introducing an award to recognize an Inspiring Educator, as well as a Community Impact Award honoring a project that addresses an environmental or health challenge.


It’s only through trying something that we can get somewhere. Flashlights required batteries, then Ann Makosinski tried the heat of her hand. His grandfather would wander out of bed at night, until Kenneth Shinozuka tried a wearable sensor. The power supply was constantly unstable in her Indian village, so Harine Ravichandran tried to build a different kind of regulator. Previous Science Fair winners have blown us away with their ideas. Now it’s your turn.


Big ideas that have the potential to make a big impact often start from something small. Something that makes you curious. Something you love, you’re good at, and want to try.

So...what will you try?

Posted by Miriam Schneider, Google for Education Team

February 13, 2015

ICC Cricket World Cup 2015: Enjoy your Cricket with Google

Cricket fans rejoice: the Cricket World Cup is here again! Can the all-round prowess of the South Africans put aside the “chokers” tag? Or will the Lankan lions roar again after almost two decades? Indian fans will keenly follow the team’s attempts to bring the cup back home, starting with their first match against archrivals Pakistan, while red-hot Australia and New Zealand will be keen to exploit home turf advantage.  

We know how exciting the next few weeks are for you, and we have a bunch of fun experiences lined up. To stay updated, join the party with the largest community of cricket fans from around the world, by following Google India on Google+ and Twitter.

Scores faster than Lee or Akhtar
Over the next two months and 49 matches, a simple Google search for [cricket] will be your quickest source for the latest scores and team schedules. We have partnered with Star Sports, and fans in India will be able to see pre-game videos, in-game highlights, and post-match recaps for the match’s most exciting moments, right from within the search results. These features will also trigger in Hindi if you search for [क्रिकेट]. Rest assured that you’ll stay tuned to the action anytime, anywhere.  


You can also stay updated on your favourite teams in the Google App with Now cards — you don’t even have to search. Download the ESPN Cricinfo app onto your phone, and you’ll start seeing Cricinfo’s Now cards pop up in the Google app.


Take the tournament’s pulse with Google Trends
Millions of fans will be searching on Google for noteworthy moments of the tournament, from the Duckworth-Lewis method to Virat Kohli’s hairstyle. Get into the conversation about what other cricket fans are buzzing about with Google Trends on +Google India throughout the tournament.


Real fans paint their face
Even if you can’t watch the games live, you can still show your support by painting your face like a true cricket fan— without ever getting your hands dirty. Take a photo of yourself and of up to four friends who’d like their faces painted and upload it to Google+ with hashtag #PaintIndia (see details at g.co/CricketFacePaint). Refresh the page to see the effect!

You can add the hashtag #CWC15Fans and publicly share your photo on Google+ for a chance to be shown on ICC’s official website. If you also add the hashtag #CastrolCheerForTheCup to a publicly shared photo on Google+, it might land on the big screen during the actual games.

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And last but not the least, keep an eye out for special Doodles during the tournament on the Google India homepage, as well as Hangouts on Air with cricketers and commentators. We will post about these Hangouts on  +Google India over the coming weeks, and many of them will also be simulcasted on 94.3 Radio One.

Have a blast following great cricket, and may the best team win!

Posted by Varun Sud, Product Marketing Manager, Google India

February 10, 2015

Today is Safer Internet Day - Can you spot the scam site?

[Cross posted from the Official Google APAC Blog]

When you last logged into your email, banking or social networking site, how did you know it was the real deal and not a fake site set up to steal your password?

Is this site real of fake? Can you spot the tell-tale signs of a “phishing” attempt?

Many of us know friends and family who have had their online accounts hijacked. But what many people don’t know is how it happens and what you can do to stop criminals in their tracks.  

Most hijackers get into accounts through “phishing” - sending emails or text messages which appear to come from a genuine source such as your bank, but are really created to steal your usernames, passwords or credit card details.

Don’t think you would so easily take the bait? Phishing is actually more effective than you might think.  According to research from our security engineers, some targeted phishing scams fool up to 45% of their victims, and once hijackers have your information, they can break into your account in as little as 30 minutes.  

So, to mark Safer Internet Day today here in India, we’ve put together this Phishing challenge!  

Can you spot the tell-tale signs of a phishing scam? Grab your kids or a friend and take a minute to scroll through the images of common online situations below. Make a note of what looks fishy and when you’re done, head on over to this gallery for the answers.



If you’re stuck, here are some quick tips (no cheating now, only read once you’ve completed the challenge!) on what you should have been on the lookout for, and should keep in mind for the future:
  • Check the URL in the address bar. It might look right in the email, but it could take you scam site designed to steal your personal details.  Also check for ‘HTTPS’ in the address bar which means the site is secure.
  • Always check the sender’s email address. Does it look right to you?  Phishing emails will often contain spelling mistakes and other irregularities.
  • Recognise scare tactics. Genuine sites never use scare tactics to get you to enter your username, password or credit card numbers.  This is a red flag that the site may not be genuine.
  • Always check the spelling.  Even though phishing can be sophisticated, hijackers are not always great spellers.  Typos on a website or email could indicate that they are not the real deal.  

If you’ve got a few more minutes, take your Google Account through our refreshed Security Check-Up tool - it’ll only take a minute, and could help you not become one of those friends everyone knows who’s had their account hijacked by phishing.

Posted by Taj Meadows, Policy Communications Manager, Google APAC