Tag: AI

The best smartphones for the AI enthusiast

Black Friday — the U.S.’s single-biggest shopping day — is nearly upon us, and that’s great news if you’re in the market for a smartphone. Retailers like Target and Best Buy are offering hundreds of dollars off the purchase of flagship Samsung Galaxy handsets. There’s a buy-one-get-one-free deal on LG G7 ThinQ at T-Mobile. And […]

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Why chatbot surveys are taking over

The way to really know what your customer wants, needs, or even would like you to stop doing, is to ask them. Surveys are the key to the kind of customer feedback that can make or break your company, but survey fatigue is real, customer engagement is as tricky as ever to nail, and survey […]

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Just say no to HomePod, Apple’s holiday lump of coal

Yesterday, I launched a 2018 holiday shopping guide for Apple products, focused on helping you pick the best Apple Watch, iPad, iPhone, Mac, and accessories ahead of the Black Friday-Cyber Monday shopping period. One item I left out was HomePod, the $349 Apple “smart speaker” I reviewed here, even though it has a pretty solid […]

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Apple reportedly bought Silk Labs, a maker of privacy-focused AI for devices

Most AI processing for mobile devices is currently handled by cloud servers, enabling companies such as Google and Amazon to monitor users’ requests as they come in. But privacy-focused Apple has been working on ways to build AI directly into its devices and has acquired a small company called Silk Labs to aid its efforts, […]

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From Withings to blockchain: Meet the French entrepreneur trying to reinvent digital health

Despite the highs and lows that Alexis Normand has experienced the past few years, his faith in the digital health revolution remains surprisingly unshaken. In fact, it’s grown so strong that he is pursuing two separate but equally interesting paths toward realizing the potential benefits. The first is his ongoing role as vice president of […]

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Apple Acquired AI Startup Silk Labs Earlier This Year

Apple is known to silently acquire startups which it believes will help improve its existing technologies. This time around, The Information reports that Apple acquired AI startup Silk Labs earlier this year. The startup focuses on developing on-device AI technology and had approximately raised $4 million in funding. In typical Apple fashion, there’s no word on how […]

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Wisconsin’s Understory raises $7.5 million for on-the-ground weather stations

Understory, a Madison, Wisconsin-based weather analytics company, announced today that it has raised $7.5 million in new funding. The round is led by local venture capital firm 4490 Ventures, an existing investor in the company. Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund also joined the round. Other existing investors in Understory include Monsanto Growth Ventures […]

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ApisProtect raises $1.8 million for bee-monitoring sensors

The worldwide honeybee community is in a crisis. In the years leading up to 2013, over 10 million of the nearly 90 million managed beehives were lost — close to twice the normal rate. Eight years ago in Northern Ireland alone, beekeepers reported an alarming decline of greater than 50 percent. Colony collapse disorder, as the […]

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Google to invest $685 million in green Danish datacenter

Google has announced plans for a new energy-efficient datacenter in Denmark, the company’s fifth datacenter in Europe. It will be located on the outskirts of Fredericia, a small town on the eastern side of Denmark, and Google said it’s spending around €600 million ($685 million) on construction, which is expected to be completed sometime after 2021, […]

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Purdue researchers use AI to predict students’ locations and friends from Wi-Fi data

Location-based check-ins reveal a lot about a person — and college students in particular, as it turns out. Researchers at Purdue University published a paper (“Exploring Student Check-In Behavior for Improved Point-of-Interest Prediction“) on the preprint server Arxiv.org early last month describing how Wi-Fi access logs could be used to identify correlations between users, locations, […]

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Google Chromecast can now sync music with Home speakers

Google Home speakers and Chromecasts can now be included in a Home audio group for music, podcasts, or audiobooks, a company spokesperson told VentureBeat in an email. That means you can play a song on Spotify, iHeartRadio, or other streaming music services both through your television and through Home speakers anywhere in your house. Support […]

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Major AI conference is moving to Africa in 2020 due to visa issues

The International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR), a major gathering of the community of researchers contributing to the advancement of the field, will be held in Africa in 2020. The conference, which focuses on things like unsupervised and supervised representation learning, will be one of the first major AI conferences to be held on the […]

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Alexa users can now make Skype calls

Microsoft announced in September that Skype calling would come to devices with Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant by the end of this year, and it’s finally made good on that promise. Amazon today confirmed to The Verge that starting this week, Alexa users will be able to make outgoing Skype voice and video calls, accept incoming calls, […]

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Amazon’s neural TTS can model speaking styles with only a few hours of recordings

Tired of Alexa’s staid, monotonous tone? Well, thanks to a new artificial intelligence (AI) technique, Amazon might soon be able to roll out new speaking styles to its voice assistant at a rapid clip. In a newly published paper (“Effect of data reduction on sequence-to-sequence neural TTS“) and an accompanying blog post, the Seattle company today detailed […]

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Enlight and Facetune creator Lightricks raises $60 million

The mobile app market is on the upswing, according to research firms like App Annie. Global downloads grew an estimated 15 percent and consumer spend 20 percent year-over-year in Q2 2018, and smartphone users spent more money on apps — $18.5 billion — than in any quarter in history. One of the most popular categories were video players and […]

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LG Xboom WK9 review: Boomy bass can’t make up for Google Smart Display shortcomings

Facebook’s Portal. Amazon’s Echo Show. Smart displays — tablet-like touchscreen devices with built-in voice assistants — aren’t exactly on the cusp of ubiquity, but they’re following in the market footsteps of the Echo and Google Home. At least, that’s what manufacturers seem to be hoping. Facebook and Amazon chose to adopt an in-house approach — […]

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AEye raises $40 million for sensor that merges camera and lidar data

With some analysts predicting as many as 10 million self-driving cars will hit the road by 2030, it’s no wonder that the lidar market is projected to be worth $1.8 million in just five years. Lidar — sensors that measure the distance to target objects by illuminating them with laser light and measuring the reflected pulses […]

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Capture 300% greater conversions with AI-powered voice and bots (VB Live)

As AI assistants get smarter, consumers are trusting them to help sort through the avalanche of buying choices available. To learn how to shift marketing efforts to capture newly connected customers, how to leverage voice bots right now, and more, don’t miss this VB Live event! Register here for free. Chatbots and virtual assistants have […]

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How automotive supplier Valeo wants to accelerate autonomous vehicle development

A few weeks ago on the streets of Paris, auto parts giant Valeo unveiled its very own autonomous car. The Valeo Drive4U roamed the streets without the aid of a driver to demonstrate just how far such technology has come. While Valeo has no intention of getting into the car-building business, it is intent on […]

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OnePlus 6T and the battle for affordable flagships

It has been a little more than two weeks since Chinese phone maker OnePlus officially lifted the lid on its ninth smartphone. Following months of leaks and teases, the OnePlus 6T flagship ushered in few surprises at its launch event in New York. We already knew that it would sport an in-screen fingerprint reader and that […]

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