Google is taking on Alexa, Siri, and Cortana with its own voice assistant: Google Assistant.Google first unveiled Assistant at Google I/O in May 2016, launched it on the Google Pixel and Pixel XL phones, brought it to Google Home and then Android Wear 2.0, before it started it rolling it out to other phones running Android.More than year on from Google Assistant's launch, Google has spread Assistant far and wide, not only on Google's own hardware, but through partnerships with other companies. That sees Google Assistant in a wide range of devices, from fridges to headphones, speakers to cars.Here's how Google Assistant works and what you need to know about Google's AIWhat is Google Assistant?Google Assistant is Google's voice-controlled smart assistant. It's was originally an upgrade or extension of Google Now - designed to be personal - while expanding on Google's existing "OK Google" voice controls.Originally, Google Now smartly pulled out relevant information for you: it knew where … [Read more...] about What is Google Assistant, how does it work, and which devices offer it?
How amazon go works
Spotify is a digital music streaming service that gives you access to millions of songs, podcasts and videos from artists all over the world.Spotify is immediately appealing because you can access content for free by simply signing up using an email address or by connecting with Facebook. If you're not keen on monthly subscription fees for Spotify Premium, or just want to dip your toe in and test it out, it's easy to get started and there's no commitment.You can find out the main differences between Spotify Free and Premium in our separate feature but as a quick summary, the free version is ad-supported much like radio stations. The free version of Spotify can be accessed on PC, laptop and mobile phone, but the full service needs a Spotify Premium subscription.How does Spotify work?Getting started with listening to music on Spotify is easy: Visit the Spotify website and sign-up. We'd recommend signing up with Facebook if you have an account as it'll make it easier to find and follow … [Read more...] about What is Spotify and how does it work?
HomeKit is basically Apple’s framework for home automation.Apple wants to make it easier for smart accessories - like Philips Hue lights, Wink lights, and other smart speakers, thermostats, detectors, plugs, blinds, locks, sensors and so on - to communicate with each other. HomeKit-enabled smart accessories are secure, easy to use, and work with iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV, and HomePod. Any manufacturer can implement HomeKit into their smart accessories.HomeKit was first announced at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference in 2014. The name is a combination of “home” for home automation and “kit” for software developer kit. You can use the new Home app for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch to set up all your HomeKit-enabled smart accessories, and then you can use Siri to ultimately control them via voice commands. Here's everything you need to know.This guide will help you easily connect and manage all the smart accessories in your … [Read more...] about Apple HomeKit and Home app: What are they and how do they work?
Grocery shopping certainly has gotten a lot easier over the years. Thanks to the ever-increasing power of mobile technology, we can now not only scan rewards cards on our phones and watches, but pay for our items with these devices as well. This is much better than having to mess with numerous plastic cards and physical cash, but things could still be better. No matter if you pay with a debit card or with your Apple Watch, you still have to wait in line to check out with your groceries. But what if you didn't have to wait in line? What if you could simply grab the items you needed from the grocery store, walk out without going through a check-out line, and instantly have them paid for?Amazon has created a grocery store to make this a reality, and they're calling it Amazon Go.Amazon Go is a physical grocery store that will be launching in Seattle, Washington in early 2017, and it's packing in some pretty impressive tech. Upon entering the Amazon Go store, you'll open the Amazon Go app … [Read more...] about Amazon Go is a grocery store that will let you skip check-out lines once and for all
In early 2014, Srikanth Thirumalai met with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Thirumalai, a computer scientist who’d left IBM in 2005 to head Amazon’s recommendations team, had come to propose a sweeping new plan for incorporating the latest advances in artificial intelligence into his division. He arrived armed with a “six-pager.” Bezos had long ago decreed that products and services proposed to him must be limited to that length, and include a speculative press release describing the finished product, service, or initiative. Now Bezos was leaning on his deputies to transform the company into an AI powerhouse. Amazon’s product recommendations had been infused with AI since the company’s very early days, as had areas as disparate as its shipping schedules and the robots zipping around its warehouses. But in recent years, there has been a revolution in the field; machine learning has become much more effective, especially in a supercharged form known as deep … [Read more...] about How Amazon Rebuilt Itself Around Artificial Intelligence
SEATTLE—A little more than one year ago, I tried, and failed, to sneak into Amazon Go. The pilot version of Amazon's first grocery store experiment advertised a first in the world of brick-and-mortar shopping: if you want to buy something, just pick it up, toss it in your bag, and walk out. A camera system watches you and uniquely tags every item you pick up, then the store automatically charges a pre-registered credit card for the purchases. No clerks, no check-out aisles. Amazon's late-2016 announcement of this store was more about building buzz than letting the public in, however. Initially, it was limited only to Amazon employees. Worse, promises that the shop would open for average consumers in "early 2017" didn't come close to fruition, with insiders indicating to Ars that the store's camera-tracking system didn't hold up to larger testing scrutiny as anticipated. But with only 24 hours' notice, that changed on Monday. That same Seattle pilot shop—the one Amazon … [Read more...] about Amazon Go debuts, and its prying cameras foil our shoplifting attempts
Create a drone zone—a dedicated piece of airspace for drones—and separate them within that space by speed and capabilities. That’s how Amazon thinks drones can best be integrated into our busy airspace, says Gur Kimchi, vice president and cofounder of Amazon Prime Air. Kimchi laid out this proposal today at UTM 2015, a three-day convention focused on Unmanned Aerial System Traffic Management, being held at the NASA Ames Research Center this week. Specifically, Amazon’s vision starts by blocking out airports and other areas that demand complete exclusion of drones, either permanently or temporarily. Everywhere else, Amazon is considering the airspace below 400 feet drone territory. Amazon sees 400 to 500 feet as a buffer zone, no drones or manned aircraft. The company would then like to see the FAA designate the airspace from 200 to 400 feet as a fast lane, reserved for the higher speed, longer distance drone travel, with below 200 feet for slower, more local … [Read more...] about Drone Control: Here’s How Amazon Thinks Drones Should Fit Into U.S. Airspace
You’re not shoplifting, you’re just shopping in the future.Amazon has launched a beta version of its Go convenience store, which it describes as a “new kind of store with no checkout required.” An ambitious project that has apparently been in the works for four years, Amazon Go seeks to do away with the nuisance of waiting in lines. Rather than paying in the store, customers simply … walk out once they’re done getting their groceries.So how does it work? According to Amazon, the experience depends upon “the same types of technologies used in self-driving cars: computer vision, sensor fusion, and deep learning.” Whenever you grab an item from a shelf, the company’s Just Walk Out technology detects what’s been taken and its price. If you change your mind about an item, you can put it back, and Amazon will remove it from your virtual shopping cart. When you’re finished, just leave, and your credit … [Read more...] about At Amazon Go, you grab your groceries, leave without waiting in line, and pay later
As Insane Clown Posse once wondered, “magnets, how do they work?” The miracle scientific phenomenon of electromagnetism is the basis for something else seemingly unaccountable: induction cooking. While not widespread in American kitchens, induction ranges do have some qualities that might make them more appealing than gas and electric varieties.In the video above from Yuppiechef, you can see the main property of induction cooking, thanks to the cut-in-half pan. The cooking surface itself remains cool, while the pan heats up. An egg dropped into the pan starts to sizzle, but the whites and yolk that spill out onto the cooktop remain raw. This is because induction doesn’t use direct (or radiant) heat to cook, but uses electric fields instead. In addition to being safer, induction ranges are also more energy-efficient and precise. If you’re boiling two liters of water, it will take you just under 10 minutes on a 2,000-watt electric stove using 320 watt-hours, … [Read more...] about Cut a pan in half, and it’s easy to see how induction cooking works
Amazon has long been heralded as the enemy of the brick-and-mortar bookstore, offering consumers a huge selection of titles via mail order at prices even the largest booksellers have trouble matching. Over time, Amazon expanded its online marketplace horizontally, adding clothing, groceries, computers, games, tech, tools, and myriad other products to its online shelves. But, with the Kindle, the company came back to its roots as a bookseller and launched a new ecosystem of electronic books. Kindle e-books have proven very popular, with the likes of Barnes & Noble and Apple jumping into the e-book business and Amazon noting at the beginning of the year that Kindle e-books are even outselling paperbacks.With the Kindle, Amazon expanded into self-publishing for would-be authors. Instead of having to spend a few thousand dollars to receive a load of cardboard boxes from a vanity press, authors can offer their work directly on the Amazon marketplace, and customers can get electronic … [Read more...] about Rewriting the rules: How Amazon could cut e-book prices by cutting out publishers