New Zealand Blog
Google news for Kiwis
A career in tech starts with a plugged-in teacher
Saturday, December 17, 2016
Computer science education provides students with lifelong skills that enable them to solve problems and develop critical analysis skills.
Computer science (CS) is more available in classrooms across New Zealand than ever, thanks to the Digital Technologies curriculum, and so equipping teachers with the everything they need to teach CS and computational thinking has never been more important.
“A lot of students come out of school able to push the right buttons, but don’t know how to approach real-world problem solving. We need to teach students how to tackle problems that seem unsolvable,” says Leanne Cameron, CS4HS grant recipient.
It also helps them prepare for the careers of the future that will certainly involve digital skills and combining computer science with other disciplines like health, science, agriculture, art and more to solve complex challenges and design innovation solutions for the world.
Other CS4HS recipients have delivered hands on practical workshops to teachers all around New Zealand to equip them with both the knowledge and the skills to engage and excite students in the opportunities that computer science can lead to.
, a 2016 CS4HS recipient, developed an
online introductory series of webinars
to give teachers the resources and confidence to teach the foundation concepts of CS with year 7-10 students.
Applications are now open
for our 2016 CS4HS program in Australia and New Zealand, and will remain open until 19 March 2016.
If you want to know where computer science can take today’s students, check out
Careers with Code
. In the future, young Australians will use computer science to do great things, and it will all start with a great teacher with a passion for the topic.
Posted by Sally-Ann Williams, Engineering Community & Outreach manager
A tiny difference can make all the difference
Friday, December 16, 2016
At Google we often talk about trying to solve the really big problems - connectivity, communication, organising the world’s information.
Sometimes we take on ideas so large it could almost seem preposterous - like organising all the information on the internet, or using artificial intelligence to translate languages.
Google has engineers in Australia working on all kinds of global problems. We have the largest
team in the world - no surprise given that Google Maps was born in Sydney; we are working to transform the way businesses operate in a digital world; we’re helping people in emerging economies make the most out of the internet in spite of poor bandwidth.
We are also in a unique position to help others solve big problems using technology, and through our philanthropic arm
we donate more than US$100 million and a further US$1 billion in products and resources every year to non-profit partners tackling some of the biggest social issues we face.
Google Australia & New Zealand managing director Jason Pellegrino, Infoxchange chief executive David Spriggs and Google.org director Jacquelline Fuller.
One of those partners is
, which is transforming the way society tackles homelessness.
It’s hard to believe, but one in 200 people is homeless. You may also be surprised to know that roughly eight out of ten of those homeless people has a smartphone.
For many homeless people their smartphone can play a decisive role in determining their outcome. Infoxchange saw the opportunity to provide people in need with location-based information via their mobile, helping connect them with essential things such as food, counselling, employment services, legal support and a safe place to sleep.
Earlier this year it launched
, the world’s first, nationwide mobile website connecting people who are at risk with essential services. Ask Izzy was developed with support from Google, News Corp and REA Group.
It is exactly the kind of problem-solving that motivates people at Google; not only did we fund the development, but a number of Google staff helped develop the technology and assist with user testing.
The mobile site was co-designed by those who have experienced homelessness. It’s also free, anonymous, and the data usage costs nothing if you access it via Telstra’s network.
The people at Infoxchange have been amazing partners because of their passion for the issue of homelessness, for the partners they’ve been able to bring together to make this project happen, and for their belief in the power of technology to make a real difference in people’s lives.
Ask Izzy was launched in January by Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, and has now been used more 250,000 times - many more times than Infoxchange expected.
Launching Ask Izzy in January, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Lucy Turnbull spoke with people who consulted on the design of Ask Izzy.
The next step for Infoxchange and Ask Izzy is to create a national database that understands how people are using essential services so that policymakers can ensure they are available where they are needed most.
This Christmas if you wish to donate to Infoxchange go to
so they can put pocket-sized mobile phone chargers into the hands of homeless people - for just $15 you can ensure that when they need that little bit of extra charge for their phone, it’s there for them.
A single power card will charge their phone for four hours. An extra phone charge in the pockets of people in need can help them find a bed, a shower, a meal, a friend.
Even when we’re seeking to make big changes to society, it’s the small things that often matter the most.
Posted by Alan Noble, Director of Engineering, Google Australia
A Year in Search: The Moments that Defined 2016
Thursday, December 15, 2016
From Rio to Kaikoura, here's what Kiwis searched in 2016
It’s that time of year again, when we look back on all the things New Zealand searched for.
It was the year you ‘caught ‘em all,’ navigated natural disasters – and made Harambe a hero. We said goodbye to some greats, made pancakes – and came together to celebrate.
To rediscover the events, people and topics that defined 2016 around the world,
So, in honour of all that made 2016 what it was, here’s a wrap-up of the topics that caught our attention and brought Kiwis together in Search.
A year of real (and political) earthquakes
Shaken by quakes and possible tsunamis, Kiwis visited Geonet in droves for information, making it the top trending search for 2016. ‘Kaikoura’ also made it into the top 10 News searches for the first time. With the US election ranked second and Brexit ranked fourth in News, Kiwis grappled with political shifts,
and wondered about the way forward.
Punching above our weight
Joseph Parker led the list as the highest trending Kiwi, following his world champion title in Boxing earned this month. With New Zealand’s haul of 18 medals at the Rio Games, including four Golds, Kiwi’s Searches showed support and spirit for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, with Olympians and Paralympians making up half our most searched Kiwis. And of course, we backed the All Blacks who went up against Ireland and Wales in their biggest matches of the year.
Searches for skills
Our ‘how to’ searches highlighted the everyday challenges we face, like tying a tie, taking a screenshot and dealing with pimples. Our foodie flair came through as we looked make the perfect pancake, and cook quinoa just right. We also asked how to play Pokemon Go, showing we boarded the bandwagon which swept the country (and the world) in July.
Saying goodbye to the greats
This year the world mourned three of music’s greatest with the passing of David Bowie, Prince and Leonard Cohen. They weren’t the only legends headed for the stars, with Alan Rickman and Muhammad Ali also passing away this year.
We’re a curious bunch
Global issues and and timeless existential questions featured in ‘what is’ and ‘why is’ searches this year. Kiwis looked to learn about TPPA, Brexit and currency exchange rates. In a year of extraordinary surprise and upheaval, it’s no surprise we came back to universal, esoteric questions – looking for meaning of life, for Matariki stars and wondering why the sky is blue.
And that’s just a preview. To dive into the top trending terms of the year, check out the full trending and most searched lists*:
Overall Searches (Trending):
Tsunami warning NZ
Global People (Trending)
Sporting Events (Trending)
All Blacks vs Ireland
Melbourne Cup 2016
T20 World Cup
Mitre 10 Rugby
All Blacks vs Wales
How to make pancakes
How to tie a tie
How to draw
How to screenshot
How to play Pokemon Go
How to train your dragon
How to draw a dog
How to cook quinoa
How to get rid of pimples
How to lose weight
What is my IP
What is the time
What is the weather in Wellington today
What is love
What is a URL
What is a class 2 licence NZ
What is TPPA
What is the Pound to the NZ Dollar
What is the meaning of life
What is Brexit
Why is there a leap day
Why is the sky blue
Why is the sea salty
Why is the sky blue for kids
Why is my nose always blocked
Why is my ear blocked
Why is Trump winning
Why is the sun yellow
Why is there Olympics
Why is the Sky Tower blue
* Trending Searches:
What was hot in 2016?
The "trending" queries are the searches that had the highest spike in traffic over a sustained period in 2016 as compared to 2015.
* Most Searched:
What topped Google’s charts?
The "most searched" queries are the most popular terms for 2016 — ranked in order by volume of searches.
to explore the rest of the 2016 Year in Search stories and top trending charts from around the world.
Posted by Camilla Ibrahim, Communications Manager, Google Australia & New Zealand
#YouTubeRewind: Celebrating what you created, watched and shared in 2015
Thursday, December 8, 2016
Kiwis went crazy for karaoke, pop and talent contests in 2016
2016 was a year of challenge and triumph. You
you caught ‘em all
you got a baby to clean the house
Now 2016 is coming to an end, you know what that means…. It’s time for #YouTubeRewind!
This year, more than 200 YouTube stars from 18 countries accepted our Ultimate 2016 Rewind Challenge to pay homage to the biggest videos, memes, channels, songs, and pop culture moments of the year. Keep an eye out for some pretty epic surprise guests.
Feel like a YouTube expert? Take our
to see how many trends and creators you can spot.
As we look back at 2016, we replay and rejoice in the trending videos and music videos from 2016, according to time spent watching, sharing, commenting, liking and more. From celebrity moments to breakdancing stormtroopers and ukuleles
, New Zealand’s top trending videos of 2016 are a quirky mix of song, dance and laughs – representing the amazing variety of creativity shared on YouTube every day.
New Zealand’s Top Trending Videos
Kiwis loved James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke series, which made up half of our most watched videos.
Adele’s installment proved our favourite video of 2016, with artists Sia, Michelle Obama, Jennifer Lopez and Gwen Stefani (featuring George Clooney and Julia Roberts) all featuring in the top 10 list.
Homegrown talent also features high up in the list. Christchurch born comic Sam Wills, best known as ‘Tape Face’ was New Zealand’s breakout contestant in America’s Got Talent Season 11. His audition was our second most popular video for 2016.
The channels who made the top trending videos have more than
subscribers who tune in regularly to watch the funny, insightful, entertaining things they create.
Adele Carpool Karaoke
Tape Face: Strange Act Leaves the Audience Speechless - America's Got Talent 2016 Auditions
Boogie Storm makes Simon’s dream come true! | Auditions Week 5 | Britain’s Got Talent 2016
Sia Carpool Karaoke
First Lady Michelle Obama Carpool Karaoke
Jennifer Lopez Carpool Karaoke
HUGE EGGS SURPRISE TOYS CHALLENGE Inflatable water slide Disney Cars Toys Paw Patrol Spiderman
Gwen Stefani Carpool Karaoke (w/ George Clooney & Julia Roberts)
Grace VanderWaal: 12-Year-Old Ukulele Player Gets Golden Buzzer - America's Got Talent 2016
Ice Cube, Kevin Hart And Conan Help A Student Driver - CONAN on TBS
New Zealand’s Top Trending Music Videos
Pop dominated the most-viewed music videos for 2016, with chart toppers Fifth Harmony, The Chainsmokers and Calvin Harris dominating the Kiwi charts.
Fifth Harmony - Work from Home ft. Ty Dolla $ign
The Chainsmokers - Closer (Lyric) ft. Halsey
Calvin Harris - This Is What You Came For (Official Video) ft. Rihanna
ZAYN - PILLOWTALK
twenty one pilots: Heathens (from Suicide Squad: The Album) [OFFICIAL VIDEO]
Major Lazer - Cold Water (feat. Justin Bieber & MØ) (Official Lyric Video)
Rihanna - Work (Explicit) ft. Drake
Ariana Grande - Side To Side ft. Nicki Minaj
Mike Posner - I Took A Pill In Ibiza (Seeb Remix) (Explicit)
CAN'T STOP THE FEELING! (From DreamWorks Animation's "Trolls") (Official Video)
For more Rewind fun, check out the
Posted by Kevin Allocca, Head of Culture & Trends, and the YouTube Rewind team
Android Pay says Kia ora
Thursday, December 1, 2016
Whether you’re shopping for new summer threads or brunching at your local favourite, your Android phone will be all you need as you walk out the door. Starting today, Android Pay is available in New Zealand, helping you pay for things simply and securely with your Android smartphone.
You will be able to use Android Pay everywhere contactless payments are accepted, including your favourite shops like The Warehouse, Domino’s, BP, BurgerFuel,
. Just wake your phone and tap as you would with your card. It’s that simple. And businesses across the country with contactless terminals don't need to do anything else to be able to accept Android Pay in store.
To start using Android Pay you’ll need to
download the Android Pay app on Google Play
and have a BNZ Flexi Debit Visa card.
Android Pay keeps your card information secure by not sharing your actual card number with stores when you pay - while allowing you to continue enjoying all the rewards and benefits of your cards.
Get started with Android Pay in New Zealand today:
download the app on Google Play
, add your card and start shopping. It’s as easy as Tap. Pay. Done.
Pali Bhat, Global Head of Payments Products
Introducing Chromecast Ultra: The Fastest Chromecast Yet
Thursday, November 24, 2016
Chromecast Ultra is available in New Zealand starting today. Get ready to have stunning content served right to your living room. All that’s needed is one small addition to your current system: Chromecast Ultra. Stream content right from your phone, tablet or computer and enjoy videos and more on your big screen.
Chromecast Ultra has everything you love about Chromecast. Plus, it comes with advanced features like 4K and High Dynamic Range (HDR) support for a fuller, crisper picture as well as faster speed and Wi-Fi improvements. At first, you’ll be able to stream 4K content from Netflix and YouTube, and we’re working to make more 4K and HDR content available.
Chromecast Ultra loads videos 1.8 times faster than other Chromecast devices and includes major Wi-Fi improvements to support streams from full HD to Ultra HD without a hitch. For those tricky Wi-Fi environments, we’re also adding Ethernet support for a wired connection.
Just like the original Chromecast, you can cast all of your favorite content from thousands of apps using your phone, tablet or laptop. Mirror any content from your Android device or from a browser tab on your laptop (using Chrome) to the TV. And it comes in a small size that hides nicely behind your TV, without adding clutter to your living room.
Chromecast Ultra is available starting today for $109 from the
Posted by Mickey Kim, Director of Product Planning and Partnerships, APAC
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