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December 25, 2008

Top Google Products in 2008

This is a top of the Google products that improved the most in 2008.

10. Blogger has improved a lot this year by adding useful features like importing/exporting a blog, inline comments, blog rolls and scheduled posts.

9. Picasa Web Albums added a feature that makes it easy to organize your photos: people tagging. The system uses face detection to find all the people from your photos and then it clusters the faces. There's a new option to make the albums private, you can send photos to an albums by email and the "explore" page highlights beautiful images.

8. Google Translate added support for 10 new languages and there's a new API that enabled the integration with many services: Twitter Search, Google Reader, YouTube etc.

7. Google Docs added a PDF reader, forms, templates, spreadsheet gadgets, an offline version and a more consistent interface.

6. YouTube started to test higher-quality versions for videos and, at the end of the year, it went widescreen. You can add captions and annotations, there's a video analytics feature and a new personalized homepage. YouTube offers more ways to promote and monetize videos, but it's still far from reaching its potential.

5. Android, Google's operating system for mobile devices, has been released and the first phone that used it wasn't a very good choice. "There is tremendous potential for this OS on mobile devices -- it truly realizes the open ideals laid out by Google when they announced this project. The only problem seems to be the stuff they either left on the back burner, cutting room floor, or hoped would come from that exciting, untapped world of open source developers. While there's plenty to praise in this phone, there's a lot more that's missing -- and some of those missing elements are what we consider to be core components of a device in the G1's class," summed up Engadget.

4. Gmail launched most of the new features as Labs experiments and there are plenty of useful additions: from task management, sending SMS, to viewing Google Calendar agenda and customizing keyboard shortcuts. If you install a plug-in, Gmail supports voice and video chat. Themes make your inbox more personal and more distinctive, but you shouldn't forget about the option that automatically redirects to the secured version of Gmail.

3. Google Maps continued to increase the coverage for Street View, which is now available in the US, France, Italy, Spain, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. You can now get walking directions, car directions enhanced by Street View, traffic estimations and explore places by looking at geo-tagged photos and videos.

2. Google Search has a new advanced search page, it detects the date when a page has been published, it's more comprehensive by indexing previously inaccessible pages, Flash files and scanned documents. Google Suggest has been enabled by default, the SearchWiki experiment is now live and the snippets are more useful for discussion boards and scientific papers.

1. Google Chrome, the most advertised Google product, is a browser that went back to the basics and impressed people with speed and simplicity. Journalists rediscovered JavaScript benchmarks and early adopters started to be excited again about a browser. "Chrome is a smart, innovative browser that, in many common scenarios, will make using the Web faster, easier and less frustrating. But this first version -- which is just a beta, or test, release -- is rough around the edges and lacks some common browser features Google plans to add later," noted Walt Mossberg. Chrome releases new versions at an impressive pace and most of the major issues will probably fixed just in time for the distribution deals.


Related:
The top for 2007 and 2006.

42 comments:

  1. Besides Google Chrome & Gmail, the Google product that I get the most out of is Google Notebook. I wish there was better integration b/t Gmail & Google Notebook.

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  2. I'd vote Gmail as the Number One Google Product. The webmail service has emerged to become the most important part of Google Operating System. Now everyday I start my works from Gmail. After checking and replying email, I manage schedule, read docs and send docs to google docs there.

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  3. This is an impressive list, and a good foundation going forward. I can't wait to see what this list looks like next year.

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  4. Gmail and Google adwords and Google products are emerging the best products in 2008, these provide excellent facilities to the users and great access to every one who access it,
    http://www.cyberdesignz.com/

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  5. I love the changes made in Blogger.com. I only wish the comments system improved much sooner for it is hard to switch once you start using services like Disqus.

    Gmail has also improved although I find the newer version running the chat application to be not so stable.

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  6. Reading this, I realiz(s)ed again, Google is almost web for most people, if you know what I mean

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  7. Waiting for features I wanted to show up in Blogger had gotten to be like watching paint dry, so I had missed the much needed import/export. I can finally delete all those crude hand-made backups, and maybe merge a few old blogs into the one I currently maintain.

    In general I'm against change for changes sake. Gmail is pretty close to perfect for my needs, so everything they do from here on out starts to look like steps in the wrong direction (unless they remain optional).

    I just find it surprising that some sort of corporate philosophy hasn't taken root that split the different between products that change almost every day versus those that go for months without an update.

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  8. I would like to see Google put the bookmarks in alphabetical or most used order. I have asked for this many times, but with no success. I'm sure it would not take too much effort.

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  9. Wow iGoogle didn't even make the list. I hope that Google does its best to help this terrific service become even more useful.

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  10. I like Google Chrome and wished that it worked on amd-64 machines and for Linux (Yes, I know about CX Chromium).

    And I still prefer to have a Google search bar in browser rather than have to load my iGoogle each time or remember to sign out of iGoogle.

    Also, have been underwhelmed so far with Google Friends Connect.

    "Praise Google, There is no API but Google"

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  11. IT's strange to see Google Chrome at number 1 inspite of so much criticism in the blogosphere,I would rank google apps at number 1 because of it's utility

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  12. I think you have had some improvements for your Machine Translation services. You have added dictionaries and also new languages. But it still needs more improvements.
    I also think it would be good idea to let people earn money from their video in Youtube.

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  13. I disagree on Chrome. It gave hopes of innovation, but its lack of compatibility is still a major issue. In my opinion.

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  14. What do you mean by lack of compatibility? It uses the WebKit rendering engine, also used by Safari and some of the best mobile phone browsers (iPhone, Android, Nokia S60).

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  15. Replies
    1. I think Google Analytics is one the best product of Google.

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  16. So, how about Google Friend Conect, quiet good /:)

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  17. Gmail had to be best product of 2008, tho Docs comes in close too..

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  18. I don't understand why Google Chrome is in first place and the spanish version has many bugs.

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  19. Yep, Gmail is No.1, because of its labs and themes!

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  20. I would vote to Google Chrome. I used this for 2 months for now, and I couldn't live without it now. ^^

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  21. Chrome rocks! I made the switch from firefox and I'm so happy I did

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  22. I hate to imagine my life without gmail

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  23. Chrome is the best and upon its release(Its only version 1)its gained second fastest web Browser in the world
    I also say kudos to GMAIL for its innovative new look

    CHROME ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!111
    IE-80%
    FireFox-90%
    Opera - 75%
    SAFARI - 97%
    GOOGLE CHROMIUM - off the chart!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  24. Chrome 2 IS THE BEST BROWSER I'LL EVER USE!!!!!! IE8-90% FF-70% SAFARI-85% GOOGLE CHROME KICKS THE COMPETITION'S BUTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I say gmail gets the number 2 spot in the best of all google products. Also,kudos to picasa for its neato design and operation.As for you samboateng,GOOGLE CHROME 1 SUCKS WHEN COMPARED TO 2!!!

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  25. google chrome is good but has some compatibility issues. Firefox still rocks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    But, Gmail is the number one product of Google. Its so much easy and fast. i have been using gmail for a long time and always found it way ahead from other such services.

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  26. Gmail is the wonderful product of google becouse its a good information give me i have been using gmail for a long time

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  27. This is an impressive list, and a good foundation going forward. I can't wait to see what this list looks like next year.

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  28. google and gmail are best i love it but i have and, wat abt Analytics ?

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  29. gmail I find best mail in the world :)

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  30. im doing a project for class and i need to know what the prices for google apps are can anyone help me?

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  31. I hate to imagine my life without gmail

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  32. google and gmail are best i love it but i have and, wat abt Analytics ?

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  33. Thank"s Gooood gmail I find best mail in the world :)

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  34. What i really liked among of all these products two years ago till now is the Picasa, It was a very helpful tool for me since i love photographing.

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  35. It is adorable that blogger has done a respectable progress

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