Saturday, October 31, 2015

Week in Review - October 31, 2015: Treats, not tricks!

Tasty treats in this Halloween edition of the Weekly Update! YouTube launched the YouTube Red subscription service in the United States, with benefits for both subscribers (ad free, offline videos, much music) and creators (potentially higher earnings). Google Photos expanded face grouping (and hiding!) to more countries, and Snapseed can now edit RAW format files. And Google+ announced their November #FeatureFriday themes, so get your Google+ Collections ready!

Photo: Spooky Halloween Androids, by me, all rights reserved.

Monday, October 26, 2015

How to embed video uploaded to Google Photos on your website or blog

Google Photos lets you easily back up your photos and videos, and share them to Google+, Facebook, Twitter or to anyone who has the link. But sometimes you want to post your videos on your blog or website.

You can import your Google Photos videos to the YouTube channel associated with your account, then embed the YouTube video.  But before you do that first consider YouTube's content policies - if your video doesn't comply, don't import it!

So how can you embed your Google Photos video on your own website without uploading it to YouTube? Google does not offer a direct way to do that, but you can access your Google Photos video in Google Drive and embed it from there.

Note: this only works to embed your own Google Photos videos or videos shared with you via Google Drive

How to embed a Google Photos video on your blog or website


  1. Upload or backup your video to Google Photos (see video upload limitations)
  2. Sign in to Google Drive (drive.google.com) on your desktop computer with the same email you use to sign in to Google Photos
  3. Click Google Photos in the left sidebar  (drive.google.com/drive/photos)
  4. Click the video you want to share (Videos have a Play icon on them)
  5. Click the Share icon at the top to set who can see your video. You can make the video Public in Advanced settings.
  6. The video will open in a lightbox - click the Pop Out  icon at top right
  7. When the video has popped out in its own window click the 3 dot More actions icon
  8. Select Embed item...
  9. Copy the embed code
  10. Paste the embed code in your website or blog
Read on for detailed instructions with screenshots

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Week in Review - October 24: Golden Gate Edition

This week Google Top Contributors converged on San Francisco for the biennial Top Contributor Summit. It was a time to learn about Google products and projects, talk to Googlers, renew friendships, and have a good time. Check out the photos and videos posted by Google Top Contributor Program Page and with the #tcsummit hashtag on Google+ and Twitter.

What else happened this week? YouTube announced the YouTube Red subscription service, Google Photos celebrated 100 million active users, the Nexus 5x shipped and more.

Photo: Sunset over San Francisco from Alameda by me, all rights reserved (ask me if you want to use it)

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Week in Review - October 17, 2015: YouTube Gaming, Mobile Live Streaming, Page creation

This week YouTube Gaming had a big update, introducing live streaming (and screen recording) from Android devices, creator sponsorship and more. YouTube also launched local versions (including the Partner Program) in seven countries. Hangouts 5 for Android rolled out, bringing animated GIFs and the ability to compose group MMS for Google Voice and Project Fi users. Plus there are tutorials for creating a Google+ Local or Brand Page in the new Google My Business dashboard, tips for new Nexus owners and more!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Use the YouTube Gaming app to record demos and tutorials on your Android device

The latest version of the Android YouTube Gaming app offers Mobile Capture, which lets you either record or live stream what you see on your screen.  It's designed for gamers, but the recording option is a simple way to create a tutorial or demo in almost any Android app.

What's required: An Android device running Lollipop or higher, the YouTube Gaming app, the YouTube app and a YouTube channel

How to record a demo or tutorial with the YouTube Gaming app (details below)

  1. Install the YouTube Gaming app and YouTube app on your Android device
  2. Sign in as the channel you want to use to record and upload your video
  3. Open the YouTube Gaming app, tap your channel icon at top right, and select "Go Live" 
  4. Select the option to Record video
  5. Select the app you want to record
  6. Position your cam image or avatar (if the camera is disabled)
  7. Start the recording - everything on screen will be recorded so be careful!
  8. End the recording, and you will be prompted to upload the video to YouTube
  9. Title the video, add a description, set visibility, and trim the ends (if desired) and save
  10. Optional: add a custom thumbnail, annotations, captions, and edit the video

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

How to create a Google+ Brand Page from Google My Business, Google+, YouTube or a mobile device

Google+ Brand Pages represent brands, organizations, bands, YouTube channels, online-only businesses, and even people who want to be able to manage their identity from multiple accounts. The recent update of the Google My Business dashboard has changed the Google+ Brand Page creation process.

You can create a new Google+ Brand Page starting from several places on Google:

1. Start from Google My Business (business.google.com/manage/)
2. Start from Google+ (click the "Pages" option in the left menu plus.google.com/dashboard)
3. Start from your YouTube All my channels page to create a channel and Page together  (www.youtube.com/channel_switcher)
4. On mobile devices, use the Google My Business app

Or, you can jump right to business.google.com/create/brand

I've outlined the process below - if you would like more detailed instructions, read on!

How to create a Google+ Brand Page at Google My Business
(detailed instructions)
  1. Sign in at business.google.com
  2. Make sure you are viewing the Brand Pages tab. If you are not, click the 3 line menu icon on top left to navigate to your Pages (business.google.com/manage/#/pages)
  3. Click the + button at lower right or select + Add a brand page from the left menu
  4. Name the new Brand Page, accept the Page terms and complete the creation process

How to create a Google+ Brand Page starting at Google+
(detailed instructions)
  1. Sign in to Google+ (plus.google.com)
  2. Click Pages in the left menu (plus.google.com/dashboard), which redirects to the new Google My Business dashboard
  3. Make sure you are viewing the Brand Pages tab. If you are not, click the 3 line menu icon on top left to navigate to your Pages (business.google.com/manage/#/pages)
  4. Click the + button at lower right or select + Add a brand page from the left menu
  5. Name the new Brand Page, accept the Page terms and complete the creation process

How to create a Google+ Brand Page with a YouTube Channel 
(detailed instructions)
This creates a new channel connected to a Brand Page
  1. Sign in to YouTube
  2. Click the channel icon at top right, then click View all for [email]
    (
    Alternately click the gear icon , then See all my channels)
  3. On All My Channels page(www.youtube.com/channel_switcher) click + Create a new channel
  4. Name the new Channel and Brand Page, accept the Page terms and complete the creation process

How to create a Google+ Brand Page on a mobile device
(detailed instructions)
  1. Install the official Google My Business app ( from the Google Play Store or from the App Store)
  2. Sign in to the app with your Google account
  3. Tap the 3 line menu icon at top left
  4. Tap the Page name at the top of the menu to expand the list of managed Pages
  5. At the bottom of the list of Pages, tap + Create new Business
  6. Select the Brand option
  7. Name the new Brand Page, accept the Page terms and complete the creation process
Do you want to create a Local Page for your business that has a physical storefront or sees clients and customers in person?  Check out Tim Capper's step-by-step guide to creating a Local Google My Business page at Online Ownership.


Saturday, October 10, 2015

Week in Review - October 10, 2015: Marshmallow, Activities Logged, New TLDs

This week Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) became available for Nexus devices, the Google+ Activity Log page was updated (much more useful!), Google Domains started offering new top level domains and email, applying for AdSense got easier, YouTube videos are offered higher quality thumbnails, and more.

Photo: Marshmallows by John Morgan on Flickr shared under a CC-BY-2.0 license

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Week in Review - October 3, 2015: New Nexii, Google Photos features, GMB Pages dashboard

This week Google announced new hardware, updated services and sites, and fabulous features! This week Google held a press event to announce new Nexus phones, a convertible tablet, new Chromecast, and some sweet updates to Google Photos (including chromecast support and (future) shared albums).

The new Nexii will work on Google's Project Fi network. You can get your questions about Project Fi answered in the new official Project Fi Help Forum!

This week was also PubCon in Las Vegas. AdWords announced new ad types on YouTube, Gmail and search, and AdSense launched the Certified Partner Program.

Plus HTTPS is now available for Blogger blogs, there is a new Google My Business dashboard for Local and Brand Pages, you can post to the top of Google+ Collections, Google Profile blue heads are going away and more!

Watch the full September Google Press Event (Google on YouTube) 

Image: from the NASA Project Apollo photo archive on Flickr