Sep 30

Petition filed in Supreme Court against Google, YouTube

Islamabad: An IT expert has filed a petition in the Supreme Court of Pakistan urging Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry to take a suo motu notice against illegal activities of Google and YouTube in Pakistan.Google YouTube

Properties worth million have been damaged after a video on YouTube, a Google’s subsidiary, was uploaded insulting Prophet Mohammed (PBUH).

It is urged in the petition that Google should pay compensation for the losses incurred in Pakistan due to the video and action for illegally using ‘Pakistan’ on its web portal without being registered in the country, Pakistan local English newspaper ‘The News’ reported.

The Google was earning six million dollars per year but did not pay a single rupee in taxes in Pakistan, the petitioner Dr. Kamil Tarar, an IT expert and research editor of TelecomPlus, said, adding that Google was not legally permitted to do business in Pakistan.

“Google is generating business annually without any financial benefit to FBR since years in the form of central leviable taxes and duties which are being evaded with impunity,” reads the application, according to the daily.

“It is worth mentioning that Google is operating in Pakistan without any lawful authority and due to this government has no check and balances in place.”

It said that by using the word ‘Pakistan’ in the title of its web portal (, Google is creating the impression that the portal is carrying out its operations with the approval of the government.

“It appears that, by using the word ‘Pakistan’ in the title of its web portal, Google has violated intellectual property rights,” said the petition.

The petitioner has made party to Google’s representative in Pakistan, Secretary Ministry of Information Technology, Chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, DG Intellectual Property Organization, Chairman FBR, Chairman Pemra, Chairman Board of Investment and Chairman Security Exchange Commission of Pakistan, the report said.


Jun 07

Google deploying planes over cities for 3D maps

SAN FRANCISCO: Google Inc is deploying a fleet of small, camera-equipped airplanes above several cities, the Internet search company’s latest step in its ambitious and sometimes controversial plan to create a digital map of the world.Google deploying planes over cities for 3D map

Google plans to release the first three-dimensional maps for several cities by the end of the year, the company said at a news conference at its San Francisco offices on Wednesday.

Google declined to name the cities, but it showed a demonstration of a 3D map of San Francisco, in which a user can navigate around an aerial view of the city.

“We’re trying to create the illusion that you’re just flying over the city, almost as if you were in your own personal helicopter,” said Peter Birch, a product manager for Google Earth.

Google’s head of engineering for its maps product, Brian McClendon, said the company was using a fleet of airplanes owned and operated by contractors and flying exclusively for Google.

Asked about potential privacy implications, McClendon said the privacy issues were similar to all aerial imagery and that the type of 45-degree-angle pictures that the planes take have been used for a long time.

Google has used airplanes to collect aerial photos in the past, such as following the 2010 San Bruno, Calif. gas-line explosion, but the latest effort marks the first time the company will deploy the planes in a systemic manner to build a standard feature in one of its products.

By the end of the year, Google said it expects to have 3D map coverage for metropolitan areas with a combined population of 300 million people. The first 3D cityscape will be available within weeks.

Google has for years operated a fleet of camera-equipped cars that crisscross the globe taking panoramic pictures of streets for its popular mapping service. The cars have raised privacy concerns in some countries.

In 2010, Google acknowledged that the so-called Street View cars had been inadvertently collecting emails, passwords and other personal data from people’s home wireless networks. Collecting the WiFi data was unrelated to the Google Maps project, and was done instead so that Google could collect data on WiFi hotspots that can be used to provide separate location-based services.

The forthcoming 3D city maps will be part of the Google Earth software app available for mobile devices such as smartphones based on Google’s Android software and Apple’s iOS software.

The company also announced a version of Google maps for Android smartphones that allows users to access certain maps without an Internet connection.

Shares of Google finished Wednesday’s regular session up 1.8 percent at $580.57.

Google’s announcement comes a week before Apple Inc’s developer conference in San Francisco, as competition between the two tech giants continues to heat up, particularly in the fast-growing mobile market.

Apple is planning to replace Google Maps as the built-in mapping service on its iPhone and iPad later this year with technology that it has created in-house, according to media reports. Apple could show off its new mapping software at next week’s conference.

Google’s McClendon said the company would continue to make Google maps services available as widely as possible, on “all platforms.”

In what appeared to be a veiled jab at Apple, he said the integration with Google’s search engine provides a mapping serving that is far more useful than a product that simply uses a “geocoder” – technology that uses geographic coordinates to create a digital map. Apple began to use its own geocoder technology for the Google-based maps on its smartphones late last year.

Google said on Wednesday that there are currently 1 billion monthly active users of Google maps services and that the Street View cars have driven more than 5 million miles photographing streets all over the world.

Asked if Google had any plans to use unmanned aerial drones to gather photos for its 3D cityscapes, McClendon said it was an interesting question, but noted that drones were still being evaluated by the Federal Aviation Administration.

“That’s a larger can of worms that we’re not going to get into here,” he said.


Luc Vincent, Google Engineering Director, demonstrates how Google captures images in hard to reach places with Street View Trekker at the Google offices in San Francisco, California,

May 23

Egypt Election 2012 with Google Doodle

Cairo: Search engine giant Google has dedicated a Doodle for Egyptians to mark Egypt Presidential Election 2102 (انتخابات الرئاسة المصرية 2012), almost 15 months after Hosni Mubarak ouster in the Arab Spring.Egypt Google

The Doodle, visible on Google’s Egyptian search home page, features Google’s letters depicting the entire election process, from standing in lines and casting the vote in ballot boxes.

Fifty million Egyptians can vote in their first free presidential election to choose between the mixed categories of candidates—Islamists, secularists, revolutionaries and the ones supporting status quo.

A transparent process during the polls is guaranteed by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf), which assumed presidential powers in February 2011.

Google has been praised by Egyptians and non-Egyptians alike for the Doodle and its efforts to make people aware of the election process and encourage them to vote for a new government.

Mar 30

Google plans low price tablet computer

SAN FRANCISCO: Google is teaming with Asia-based hardware makers on a low-priced, 7-inch tablet computer to challenge offerings by and Apple, reports said Thursday.

Google plans low price tablet PC

Android software backed by the California Internet giant will power hardware built by partners including Samsung and Asustek to compete with iPad and Kindle devices, according to Digitimes and the Wall Street Journal.

An Asustek tablet could be released as early as May with a price of $199 to make it an option for shoppers considering the Kindle Fire made by, said Digitimes.

Google putting its weight behind an economical tablet would likely put pressure on other gadget makers to lower prices. Google did not respond immediately to an AFP request for comment.