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EU legal advice: France can't censor Google globally

EU legal advice: France can't censor Google globally

Technology
France should not able to use EU laws to force Google to delete search results outside of the EU's jurisdiction, according to one of the bloc's most senior legal advisers. The French data watchdog had gone to the European Court of Justice to establish whether it could force companies such as Google to de-list search results across the world under the right to be forgotten (RTBF) law.Google and France's data regulator, the Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertes (CNIL) argued whether data should only be removed within France or if it should be de-listed on every Google domain.The CNIL said that globally enforcing the removal was the only way to actually uphold the RTBF, but Google warned that this could risk making it breaking the law in other jurisdictions.Th...
CES 2019: Amazon and Google Assistant carve up tech expo

CES 2019: Amazon and Google Assistant carve up tech expo

Technology
At CES, there's no shortage of gadgets to talk to. Smart TVs, cars, pianos - and even a toilet - these are just some examples of devices that come with voice-activated helpers.No matter who makes the hardware, the virtual aide linked to or packaged inside is likely to be one of two: either Amazon's Alexa or Google Assistant.For ShadeCraft, the maker of a new device that lets garden parasols be controlled by voice, Alexa was simply more straight-forward to build in."It was much easier and simpler to integrate," explains chief executive Armen Gharabegian. "But we have been testing Google voice as well." Users can ask Alexa to open or close the sunshades mechanically, or pl...
Google finally cleans up its Esta ads after eight years

Google finally cleans up its Esta ads after eight years

Technology
Google says it will stop ads for expensive unofficial Esta services appearing at the top of search results, eight years after the first complaints.In 2010, the US started charging UK travellers to use the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (Esta).Unofficial sites charging five times as much as the US government soon flooded the top of Google's search results, despite breaking Google's ad rules. Now, after a BBC News investigation, Google says it is tackling the issue.While unofficial Esta sites will still appear in the search results, they should no longer appear above the official website as advertisements when using the most common search terms. Since it has used machine learning to address the issue, the ads do still s...
Google helps boost High Street spending with search

Google helps boost High Street spending with search

Technology
Attempts to increase the number of people shopping on UK High Streets has been given a boost by search giant Google.It has teamed up with start-up NearSt to help consumers see what is available in their local shops via the web.The search results will also tell people the distance to the shop and the price of goods for sale.The live inventory system should help make it "as easy to shop locally as it is online" said Google.NearSt was founded three years ago by digital brand experts Nick Brackenbury and Max Kreijn.Mr Kreijn literally had a "lightbulb moment" when one of the bulbs in his flat went, and he searched online to buy a replacement."That's how he pitched the business to me," Mr Brackenbury told the BBC. "It seemed crazy tha...
'Ugly' mistake sends Google data to China

'Ugly' mistake sends Google data to China

Technology
Google data for search and cloud services went astray for more than an hour on Monday thanks to an "ugly" mistake by an African ISP.The data was sent the wrong way when MainOne Cable, in Nigeria, updated address books for key network hardware.The update saw it claim to be the best way to reach millions of Google net addresses. The mistake spread to other networks and led to Google traffic travelling via China and Russia.New routesIn a tweet, MainOne said the mistake had been made during a "planned network upgrade". It added: "The error was corrected within 74 minutes and processes put in place to avoid reoccurrence."All the different networks that make up the internet constantly swap information about the best way to reach other...