• Amazon Debuts New AI Platform
    Amazon just debuted a new Amazon AI platform. “This new service brings many of the machine learning smarts Amazon has developed in-house over the years to devs outside the company,” TechCrunch writes. “For now, the service only makes three different tools available, but the plan is to add more over time.”
  • Mix Of VR, AR Seen Impacting Real Estate Marketing
    At a café in Tokyo’s chic Shibuyu district, Kate settles down to make some home improvements. She orders a cappuccino, straps on a pair of virtual reality goggles and shuts herself off from the outside world. Meanwhile, her husband Mike, on a business trip in Edinburgh, sits in his hotel room wearing a similar pair of goggles. The couple move through the property together, discussing options for kitchen worktops, dining room tables and curtains for the master bedroom. Welcome to the future, where, from anywhere in the world, you can immerse yourself in a real place, and virtually walk through …
  • Retailers Tap Augmented Reality For Holiday Shoppers
    With the holiday shopping season upon us, retailers are feeling the pressure to make big numbers during their busiest time of the year. Retailers generate 25 percent of their annual sales during this lucrative period according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). There are more challenges for retailers than ever before. Brick and mortar stores are struggling with fierce online competition. Department stores such as Target, Walmart and BestBuy posted year-over-year declines of 7.3 percent. Further, mobile commerce is on the rise. Mobile shoppers now make up 61 percent of total ecommerce traffic, according to Unbxd.
  • Samsung Campaign Features Galaxy VR
    After controversy surrounding the exploding Galaxy Note 7, Samsung is attempting to bolster its other properties, including virtual reality offerings this season with the Gift of Galaxy campaign, which offers a holiday VR experience encouraging customers to purchase a Samsung Galaxy for a friend. The promotion includes a new ad spot that highlights the capabilities of Samsung’s VR offerings. Along with the promotions, Samsung is also giving customers a free Galaxy VR pack with the purchase of a Samsung Galaxy phone.
  • Amazon Planning Premium Echo
    Amazon is reportedly developing a premium Echo-like speaker with a video screen. “The new device will have a touchscreen measuring about seven inches, a major departure from Amazon’s existing cylindrical home devices that are controlled and respond mostly through the company’s voice-based Alexa digital assistant,” Bloomberg reports, citing sources. The move is “a sign the world’s largest online retailer is trying to capitalize on the surprise success of its voice-controlled home gadgets,” it suggests.
  • Researchers Claim To Take Control Of Tesla By Tapping Owner's Mobile App
    An often-asserted downside of internet-connected vehicles is that they’re subject to various forms of hacking, including theft. On Wednesday, a Norwegian security company called Promon claimed to have found something like the Holy Grail of vehicle hacking—by compromising a Tesla owner’s Android phone, they could take control of Tesla’s mobile app and steal the car. The hack relies on tricking a Tesla owner into downloading a malicious app, for instance through a spoofed public Wi-Fi hotspot that would direct them to a deceptive GooglePlay download. That app could then escalate permissions on the owner’s phone and corrupt the Tesla app. Attackers could then, …
  • Verizon Starts IoT Bike Pilot Project
    Verizon announced a pilot project with solar-powered bike-sharing company Swiftmile on Friday to aid commuters in Santa Clara County, Calif. The Internet of Things-based pilot project is designed initially to help Santa Clara Valley Transit Authority workers use one of Swiftmile's four ebikes for short bike trips, including commutes from work to home and back again. Next year, the project will be expanded to 80 bikes at the Stanford Research Park, according to Swiftmile CEO Colin Roche.
  • Retailers Anxious Over Potential IoT Security Threats
    When a novel hacking attack crippled parts of the Internet in October, it cut off consumers access to popular websites like Netflix and Kayak for hours at a time. For online retailers, the effect was the same as when a physical store shuts down: no customers and no sales. While hacking is not responsible for every website shutdown—an ordinary onslaught of customer traffic caused the online operations Target  TGT 0.17%  and Neimen Marcus to buckle last year — the threat is adding to retailers’ anxiety at a time when Internet sales are a critical growth area.
  • Honeywell To Market App That Unlocks Doors
    The office too cold? Too hot? Forgot your office ID badge? Don’t sweat it. Honeywell has an answer. The company’s new Vector Occupant app lets workers use their cellphones to change office temperatures or to gain access into locked buildings when they forget their ID cards at home. Honeywell says the app is a win because it quickly gives locked-out workers access to their office without needing to call for help or replace ID badges. Employees simply hold up their phone app to the black card readers instead of their plastic ID cards. The app helps ID the worker …
  • New Ring Gadget Delivers Text Messages, Calls Via Vibrations
    A new ring gadget will have smartphone users looking like secret agents, but instead of transmitting sensitive codes, the invention delivers text messages or calls through vibrations straight into the ear. Hong Kong start-up Origami Labs has developed a ring worn on the index finger, which uses bone conduction technology to deliver sound when the user places their fingertip next to their ear, in a gesture similar to that used by the US secret service. The ring can be paired with a smartphone’s voice assistant to perform tasks without looking at the screen. “We see this as a new …
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