The smartphone growth is global

Last October, we launched Our Mobile Planet, a resource enabling anyone to visualize the ways smartphones are transforming how people connect with information, each other and the places around them.

Today, we’re releasing new 2012 research data, and the findings are clear—smartphone adoption has gone global. Today, Australia, U.K., Sweden, Norway, Saudi Arabia and UAE each have more than 50 percent of their population on smartphones. An additional seven countries—U.S., New Zealand, Denmark, Ireland, Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland—now have greater than 40 percent smartphone penetration. In the U.S., 80 percent of smartphone owners say they don’t leave home without their device—and one in three would even give up their TV before their mobile devices!

We conducted this research to help people to better understand how mobile is changing our world. You can learn about mobile-specific usage trends, use this tool to create custom visualizations of data and more. There’s plenty to discover in the latest research—to dig into new survey data about smartphone consumers in 26 countries from around the world, read our post on the Google Mobile Ads blog or visit

Microsoft Bing Maps Takes the Fast Route to Efficiency

Microsoft Bing Maps team members Tom Barclay, Brad Clark and Ryan Tracy talk about how their work with Dell Data Center Solutions on their new microsite in Longmont, Colorado, enables them to deliver the world to the world — for less.

Custom content for Google Earth on Android

One of the most powerful features of Google Earth is the ability to view custom maps or overlays, which are also commonly known as KML files. Ever since we introduced Google Earth on mobile devices, users have requested support for custom content. Today, we are proud to announce Google Earth 6.2 for Android and iOS, which includes support for KMLs. Now anywhere you find a “Google Earth file” (KML file) while you’re browsing the mobile web, just click on the link and the Google Earth app will automatically launch and load the custom map.

With this release, the Google Earth Gallery is also now available in the mobile app, enabling you to easily explore some of the best maps from around the web directly within Google Earth. For example, not sure if that was an earthquake? Go to the Earth Gallery and click on the USGS’ real-time earthquake map to see recent earthquakes from around the world.

Maybe you’re interested in finding hiking trails on your next vacation. Check out Everytrail to find a hike wherever you might be.

If you’re a basketball fan, be sure to check out the new College Basketball Tournament map, which takes you on a virtual trip to the school and stadiums of this year’s competing teams.

For Google Earth for Android users, we’ve also added a new “Share” feature, which allows you to share a screenshot of your current view with people in your Google+ circles, via Gmail, or on other applications. Now you can share your favorite places with friends and family from your desktop computer, mobile phone or tablet. And, if you follow the Google Earth +Page, you can see what others are sharing and discover new locations around the world.

The 6.2 release of Google Earth for Android and iOS also includes improvements in navigation, which make it even easier to fly to your favorite spots on the globe.

To check out the latest version of Google Earth for Android phones and tablets, download it now from Google Play.