Pay to Remove Google Ads
Now you can, that is, pay to remove Google Ads. Although the program is still in Beta, Google is testing the possibility of taking ad revenue directly rather than by serving you ads. Is this the beginning of the end, or just a long awaited idea?
You’re probably wondering why you can’t just use an ad blocking add-on rather than pay Google, content isn’t always free. Although there are people in this world who are quite willing to produce content for free, it is never actually free. Production of just about everything, has it’s cost. But to pay may just be the alternative that you may want to avoid a page full of ads that do not pertain to you.
Granted, paying Google for ads will only remove the ads that come from Google. And although Google is by far the largest supplier of ads, those from non-Google companies will still be visible. In the space of a Google ad will merely be a “thank-you” to patrons of the new service.
Now for the damage. Currently it sounds like the price of ads is going to run in the range of $1-$3 per month. There’s no word on whether this is the final amount or how likely it is to change. But since we know that Google is not evil, it’s probably safe to say that it will not change. Mind you, this is PER SITE PAYMENT, not just a flat fee for all sites with Google ads.
If this all sounds familiar, it is. There are already other contribution sites out there that allow you to pay directly rather than look at ads (such as Patreon). But this new feature coming from the largest supplier of ads could change the way things work for certain regular sites that you may visit. As of right now the participating sites will be Urban Dictionary, The Onion, Science Daily, Wiki How, and Imgur.
Moffett Field gets new management from Google
In a press release today, NASA announced that Google manages Moffett Field, now. For the next 60 years, Google will manage all operations as well as the refurbishing of the three major hangars on the site. NASA will retain ownership of the roughly 1000 acres of land, but will hand off the reigns to it’s largest neighbor.
Google has long had a strong interest in the airfield, using it as a highly convenient place to store and utilize company aircraft. And with the bid to refurbish the historic landmark — Hangar One, Google now has access to all the buildings. This may lead Google to get even further involved in space and air travel and development.
Over the course of the lease, Google will expend over 1 billion dollars while saving NASA administration over 6 million dollars annually ($380 mil total).
It’s apparent just from the time and money spent by Google on advanced technology, that they are interested in the ideals of NASA. And as unexpected at this move might seem, it may also be one of the better actions that both Google and NASA have made in a while.
Skybox for Good
Google is opening up their satellite imagery to non-profit companies. It’s called the Skybox for Good program and it is already taking applications. That is to say that non-profit companies can apply for imagery.
The program will begin with a few close partners and expand from there out to everyone. Fortunately, the data is all licensed under Creative Commons for public use.
Google is no stranger to pushing forward into the higher ideal and this example is a prime for it. The idea behind this move is to offer a helping-hand to budding or low income groups that need overhead views of remote land locations. It can also be used to observe changes over time. Check out the map listing site for current projects (map)
One example is an organization called “Save the Elephants” out of Kenya is using the maps to watch poaching and the ivory trade.
Google’s commitment to helping non-profits may lead to painting the idea of world mapping in a positive light.
New Google Plus Share Button
Get your new Google Plus share button on as long as you are logged into a browser with your Google account. This new Share button will allow you to post to Google Plus from just about anywhere. And remember public Google Plus posts are public everywhere on the web, not just on Google Plus.
This breaks out the sharing feature from the prior version that was tied to your user profile. You can now share away without more clicking. No longer will you need to add a bookmark to your links just to share with Google Plus. And more than just photos and links, the new Google Plus share button includes videos, events, and polls.
Cox Cable Upgrades Internet Service Speeds
It would appear to be a trial when Cox Cable upgrades to gigabit service. Not everyone who currently has access to Cox internet service will be able to get the gigabit service. Only a mere 5000 customers will be tuned to the new service to start.
Cables companies can definitely see the writing on the wall and are moving to close the bandwidth gap before Google steals it from them. But unlike Comcast, Cox Cable is matching the pricing of Google Fiber at $120 / month for tv and gigabit internet. Comcast has been upgrading customers to double and triple the prior speeds in areas that Google has promised to install Fiber. And these upgrades come at no additional cost to the consumer. But Comcast is not matching the prices that Cox has moved to.
AT&T appears to also have plans to change prices for gigabit services in select locations to something more closely resembling the prices charged by Google Fiber. But will they also be performing a tiny roll out, or a massive one like Google? We’ll have to wait and see.
Across the board incumbent ISPs are beginning to feel the pinch from Google Fiber, only time will tell as whether they decide to compete. Apparently Google’s plan to force competition is working?