Originally posted on Google Apps Developers blog
Posted by Henry Wang, Associate Product Marketing Manager
Originally posted on Google Research Blog
Posted by Peter Lubbers, Senior Program Manager, Google Developer Training
Almost three years ago we shipped our very first Udacity course about HTML5 Game Development. Today marks a milestone that we proudly want to share with the world. The 1 millionth person has enrolled in our Google Developer Training courses. Was it you?
This milestone is more than just a number. Thanks to our partnership with Udacity, this training gives developers access to skills that empower families, communities, and the future.
One million developers around the world have made a commitment to learn a new language, expand their craft, start a new business, completely shift careers and more. So, here's to the next million people who are excited about using technology to solve the world’s most pressing challenges.
Posted by Vijay Subramani, Technical Program Manager, Google Cloud Platform
Back in 2011, we announced the deprecation of the following APIs: Google Patent Search API, Google News Search API, Google Blog Search API, Google Video Search API, Google Image Search API. We supported these APIs for a three year period (and beyond), but as all things come to an end, so has the deprecation window for these APIs.
We are now announcing the turndown of the above APIs. These APIs will cease operations on February 15, 2016.
You may wish to look at our Custom Search API as an alternative for these APIs.
Posted by Nathan Martz, Product Manager, Google Cardboard
Human beings experience sound in all directions—like when a fire truck zooms by, or when an airplane is overhead. Starting today, the Cardboard SDKs for Unity and Android support spatial audio, so you can create equally immersive audio experiences in your virtual reality (VR) apps. All your users need is their smartphone, a regular pair of headphones, and a Google Cardboard viewer.
Many apps create simple versions of spatial audio—by playing sounds from the left and right in separate speakers. But with today’s SDK updates, your app can produce sound the same way humans actually hear it. For example:
We built today’s updates with performance in mind, so adding spatial audio to your app has minimal impact on the primary CPU (where your app does most of its work). We achieve these results in a couple of ways:
It’s really easy to get started with the SDK’s new audio features. Unity developers will find a comprehensive set of components for creating soundscapes on Android, iOS, Windows and OS X. And native Android developers will now have a simple Java API for simulating virtual sounds and environments.
Check out our Android sample app (for developer reference only), browse the documentation on the Cardboard developers site, and start experimenting with spatial audio today. We’re excited to see (and hear) the new experiences you’ll create!
Posted by Johnny Lee, Technical Project Lead, Project Tango
Today, at CES, Lenovo announced the development of the first consumer-ready smartphone with Project Tango. By adding a few extra sensors and some computer vision software, Project Tango transforms your smartphone into a magic lens that lets you place digital information on your physical world.
*Renderings only. Not the official Lenovo device.
To support the continued growth of the ecosystem, we’re also inviting developers from around the world to submit their ideas for gaming and utility apps created using Project Tango. We’ll pick the best ideas and provide funding and engineering support to help bring them to life, as part of the app incubator. Even better, the finished apps will be featured on Lenovo’s upcoming device. The submission period closes on February 15, 2016.
All you need to do is tell us about your idea and explain how Project Tango technologies will enable new experiences. Additionally, we’ll ask you to include the following materials:
For some inspiration, Lowe's Home Improvement teamed with developer Elementals Web to demonstrate a use case they are each working on for the launch. In the app, you can point your Project Tango-enabled smartphone at your kitchen to see where a new refrigerator or dishwasher might fit virtually.
Elsewhere, developer Schell Games let’s you play virtual Jenga on any surface with friends. But this time, there is no cleanup involved when the blocks topple over.
There are also some amazing featured apps for Project Tango on Google Play. You can pick up your own Project Tango Tablet Development Kit here to brainstorm new fun and immersive experiences that use the space around you. Apply now!
Originally posted on Google Apps Developer Blog
Posted by Posted by Wesley Chun (@wescpy), Developer Advocate, Google Apps
In case you missed it last week, the Google Drive team announced the release of the next version of their API. Today, we dig deeper into details about the release with developers. In the latest edition of the Launchpad Online developer video series, you'll get everything you need to know about the new release (v3), as well as its relationship with the previous version (v2).
This jam-packed episode features an introduction to the new API, an interview with a Google Drive engineer about the API design and a code walkthrough of real source code you can use today (as with all my Launchpad Online episodes). This time, it's a command-line script that performs Google Drive file uploads and downloads, presented first in v2 followed by a how-to segment on migrating it step-by-step to v3. In addition, the uploading segment includes the option of converting to Google Apps formats while the download portion covers exporting to alternative formats such as PDF®.
To get started using the Drive API, check out the links to the official documentation above (v2 or v3) where you’ll also find quickstart samples in a variety of programming languages to the left. For a deeper dive into both Python code samples covered here, including v3 migration, start with the first of two related posts posted to my blog.
If you’re new to the Launchpad Online, we share technical content aimed at novice Google developers -current tools with a little bit of code to help you launch your next app. Please give us your feedback below and tell us what topics you would like to see in future episodes!
Posted by Romain Vialard, a Google Developer Expert and developer of Yet Another Mail Merge, a Google Sheets add-on.
Google Apps Script makes it easy to create and publish add-ons for Google Sheets, Docs, and Forms. There are now hundreds of add-ons available and many are reaching hundreds of thousands of users. Google Analytics is one of the best tools to learn what keeps those users engaged and what should be improved to make an add-on more successful.
Add-ons run inside Google Sheets, Docs, and Forms where they can display content in dialogs or sidebars. These custom interfaces are served by the Apps Script HTML service, which offers client-side HTML, CSS, and JS with a few limitations.
Among those limitations, cookies aren’t persistent. The Google Analytics cookie will be recreated each time a user re-opens your dialog or sidebar, with a new client ID every time. So, Analytics will see each new session as if initiated by a new user, meaning the number of sessions and number of users should be very similar.
Fortunately, it’s possible to use localStorage to store the client ID — a better way to persist user information instead of cookies. After this change, your user metrics should be far more accurate.
Add-ons can also run via triggers, executing code at a recurring interval or when a user performs an action like opening a document or responding to a Google Form. In those cases, there’s no dialog or sidebar, so you should use the Google Analytics Measurement Protocol (see policies on the use of this service) to send user interaction data directly to Google Analytics servers via the UrlFetch service in Google Apps Script.
A Client ID is also required in that case, so I recommend using the Apps Script User properties service. Most examples on the web show how to generate a unique Client ID for every call to Analytics but this won’t give you an accurate user count.
You can also send the client ID generated on client side to the server so as to use the same client ID for both client and server calls to Analytics, but at this stage, it is best to rely on the optional User ID in Google Analytics. While the client ID represents a client / device, the User ID is unique to each user and can easily be used in add-ons as users are authenticated. You can generate a User ID on the server side, store it among the user properties, and reuse it for every call to Analytics (both on the client and the server side).
In add-ons, we usually rely on event tracking and not page views. It is possible to add different parameters on each event thanks to categories, actions, labels and value, but it’s also possible to add much more info by using custom dimensions & metrics.
For example, the Yet Another Mail Merge add-on is mostly used to send emails, and we have added many custom dimensions to better understand how it is used. For each new campaign (batch of emails sent), we record data linked to the user (e.g. free or paying customer, gmail.com or Google for Work / EDU user) and data linked to the campaign (e.g. email size, email tracking activated or not). You can then reuse those custom dimensions inside custom reports & dashboards.
Once you begin to leverage all that, you can get very insightful data. Until October 2015, Yet Another Mail Merge let you send up to 100 emails per day for free. But we’ve discovered with Analytics that most people sending more than 50 emails in one campaign were actually sending 100 emails - all the free quota they could get - but we failed to motivate them to switch to our paid plan.
As a result of this insight, we have reduced this free plan to 50 emails/day and at the same time introduced a referral program, letting users get more quota for free (they still don’t pay but they invite more users so it’s interesting for us). With this change, we have greatly improved our revenue and scaled user growth.
Or course, we also use Google Analytics to track the efficiency of our referral program.
To help you get started in giving you more insight into your add-ons, below are some relevant pages from our documentation on the tools described in this post. We hope this information will help your apps become more successful!:
Romain Vialard profile | website
Romain Vialard is a Google Developer Expert. After some years spent as a Google Apps consultant, he is now focused on products for Google Apps users, including add-ons such as Yet Another Mail Merge and Form Publisher.
Originally Posted on DoubleClick Publisher Blog
Mobile app usage has grown 90% in the past two years and contributes to 77% of the total increase in time spent in digital media. People intuitively turn to mobile devices for information and entertainment, typically spending 37 hours per month in apps. This shift in the consumer mobile experience presents a significant opportunity for increased engagement and monetization for publishers with apps.
To help you effectively capture this mobile opportunity, we’ve gathered our most actionable research and best practices for reaching, engaging, and monetizing app audiences.
Learn something new and want to know more? For more details on our four strategies for app success, review the DoubleClick for Publishers ‘Mobile Bootcamp’ blog series on growing app audiences, engaging users, ensuring high app quality, and effectively monetizing.