Displaying items by tag: Siri

Apple’s latest smartwatch is LTE-enabled

Written on Thursday, 14 September 2017 11:39

Apple launched the latest Apple Watch on September 12 at the grand unveiling of its new products at the newly inaugurated Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park. While most of the attention at the launch was on Apple’s iPhone anniversary device, the iPhone X, the Californian tech giant’s Apple Watch Series 3 is impressive.  

The new smartwatch has cellular capability allowing you to stay connected, make calls, and receive texts, without pairing with an iPhone. The third generation Apple Watch also features music steaming, a faster dual-core processor, and watchOS 4. Apple Watch Series 3 comes in two models, one with GPS and cellular, and one with just GPS, both featuring a 70 percent faster dual-core processor and new wireless chip.

Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) starts at US$399 and Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS) starts at US$329. In addition to silver or space gray aluminum, Apple Watch Series 3 now comes in a new gold aluminum, along with silver or space black stainless steel cases, which all pair with an assortment of new band colors and styles.

Soon, the combination of cellular and watchOS 4 will allow Apple Music users to stream 40 million songs right from their wrist. Beginning Friday, September 15, Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) will be available to order in 10 countries and territories, and Apple Watch Series 3 GPS will be available to order in 28 countries and territories. Both models are available in stores starting Friday, September 22.

“We believe the addition of cellular will transform the way people use Apple Watch, providing a new sense of freedom since they can stay connected with or without their iPhone,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer. “Apple Watch Series 3 combined with the power of watchOS 4 is the ultimate device for a healthy life.”

Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) features a full LTE and UMTS cellular radio that automatically switches to cellular when it’s away from an iPhone. The smartwatch shares the same number as the iPhone it’s paired with, so there’s no need to provide an additional number. To help get customers started, participating carriers will offer special introductory cellular plans at launch.

Customers have the ability to make cellular calls directly with Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) and, when paired with AirPods, enjoy a fully wireless experience. Apple also pioneered an industry-first antenna design that uses the display itself as both a transmitting and receiving element for LTE and UMTS, while introducing a built-in eSIM that is over one-hundredth the size of a traditional SIM card, making over-the-air activation possible without compromising space.

The third-generation Apple Watch functions as a health and fitness companion with intelligent coaching features, water resistance 50 meters and a new barometric altimeter that measures relative elevation. 

Powering Apple Watch Series 3 is the S3, Apple’s third-generation architecture featuring a faster dual-core processor, which allows for quicker app launch times and smoother graphics, and, for the first time, enables Siri to speak using the built-in speaker.

Apple designed a new custom wireless chip called W2, making Wi-Fi 85 percent faster and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi 50 percent more power efficient, while still providing all-day battery life and keeping the size virtually the same as before. Apple Watch Series 3 also features a barometric altimeter that assists with tracking activity, flights climbed and outdoor workouts, including elevation gain.

Apple’s new smartwatch operating system watchOS 4 features an updated Heart Rate app, giving even more insight to heart rate, including measurements during resting, workout, recovery, walking and Breathe sessions. You can also choose to receive a notification when their heart rate is elevated above a specific threshold while inactive.

Other watchOS 4 features include the proactive Siri watch face that displays the information users need most throughout the day, an enhanced Workout app with new interface, custom High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout type and auto-sets for pool swims. With GymKit, users will soon enjoy the ability to connect to their favorite cardio equipment and experience two-way synchronization of data with just a tap, resulting in the most accurate information possible.

In addition, the redesigned Music app experience automatically syncs playlists like New Music Mix and Favorites Mix, along with your most listened to music. The Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) will soon be able to stream music, giving users access to any song from Apple Music, straight from the wrist. The new Radio app also enables listeners to access Beats 1 live or any Apple Music radio station while away from iPhone or Wi-Fi.

Published in Gadget

South Korean conglomerate Samsung have announced that its voice-based assistant entitled ‘Bixby’ is now available for Galaxy S8 users in over 200 countries worldwide following its release in the US last month.

The world’s biggest smartphone manufacturer had launched Bixby domestically and in the US, but now voice-assistant technology is available in countries such as the UK, Canada, Australia and South Africa. Samsung developed the feature in an attempt to catch-up with Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri.

Bixby currently only supports English and Korean, and issued a statement highlighting the fact that not all accents, dialects and expressions will be recognized. It stressed that it will take time for Bixby to adapt and understand regional dialects.

The statement read, “Natural language understanding allows Bixby to continuously improve its ability to interpret regional dialects. But since Bixby learns more frequently used command terms more quickly, it will take more time for Bixby to fully understand regional dialects that are used less frequently.”

The electronics colossus has revealed that Bixby’s features include Quick Commands which allows users to create a custom voice command to use instead of a sequence of one or more demands. In addition to this, Samsung’s voice-assistant can also grasp the understanding of cross-application commands and features deep learning technology which can improve over a period of time which can then recognize personal preferences and ways of talking.

The statement added that when an application becomes Bixby-enabled, the platform will support every task the application is capable of performing using voice, touch or text. EVP and Head of Research and Development at Samsung Electronics mobile, Injong Rhee has predicted that the emergence and evolution of Bixby will lead to a more seamless connection for users across a range of devices.

Rhee said, “The expansion of Bixby’s voice capabilities is an initial step in the continued rollout of Bixby functionality. In the future, Bixby will have the learning power to offer more intelligent and personalised interactions and seamless connections across more devices.”

It has also been disclosed that Samsung is intending on expanding Bixby’s voice capabilities to additional countries, languages, devices, features and third-party applications. Samsung first unveiled its voice-assistant back in March, but it suffered some teething problems when the launch of the English version of the product was delayed. It then targeted a launch date in May, but that was pushed back to the end of June, before Bixby was eventually launched in the US in July.

However, it now places Samsung amongst the ever-competitive AI voice-assistant market and analysts are predicting Bixby to be a biggest success for the South Korean colossus.

Published in Devices

Apple opened its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on June 5 in San Jose, California, where major releases were dropped. WWDC is a conference held annually in California by Apple Inc. The event is used by Apple to showcase its new software and technologies for software developers.

At the event Apple unveiled a range of new hardware products and software including the HomePod, a Siri-powered speaker designed to rival Amazon's Echo and Google's Home. Other releases included the best features of the upcoming iOS 11 operating system, a 10.5-inch iPad Pro, and enhanced MacBook and iMac computers.

HomePad

Apple announced HomePod, a breakthrough wireless speaker for the home that delivers amazing audio quality and uses spatial awareness to sense its location in a room and automatically adjust the audio. Designed to work with an Apple Music subscription for access to over 40 million songs, HomePod provides deep knowledge of personal music preferences and tastes and helps users discover new music.

HomePod features a large, Apple-designed woofer for deep, clean bass, a custom array of seven beam-forming tweeters that provide pure high frequency acoustics with incredible directional control and powerful technologies built right in to preserve the richness and intent of the original recordings. HomePod will be available starting in December, initially in Australia, the UK and the US.

“Apple reinvented portable music with iPod and now HomePod will reinvent how we enjoy music wirelessly throughout our homes,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “HomePod packs powerful speaker technology, Siri intelligence and wireless access to the entire Apple Music library into a beautiful speaker that is less than 7 inches tall, can rock most any room with distortion free music and be a helpful assistant around your home.”

HomePod is designed for voice control with an array of six microphones, so users can interact with it from across the room, even while loud music is playing. By saying, “Hey Siri, I like this song,” HomePod and Apple Music become the perfect musicologist, learning preferences from hundreds of genres and moods, across tens of thousands of playlists, and these music tastes are shared across devices.

Siri can also handle advanced searches within the music library, so users can ask questions like “Hey Siri, who’s the drummer in this?” or create a shared Up Next queue with everyone in the home. HomePod, Apple Music and Siri deliver the best music experience in the home that streams ad-free directly to HomePod.

As a home assistant, HomePod is a great way to send messages, get updates on news, sports and weather, or control smart home devices by simply asking Siri to turn on the lights, close the shades or activate a scene. When away from home, HomePod is the perfect home hub, providing remote access and home automations through the Home app on iPhone or iPad.

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10.5-inch iPad Pro and 12.9-inch iPad Pro

Apple also introduced an all-new 10.5-inch iPad Pro and a new 12.9-inch iPad Pro, featuring the world’s most advanced display with ProMotion technology and incredible performance with the new A10X Fusion chip.

The new 10.5-inch model reduces the borders by nearly 40 percent to fit into an incredibly compact package that still weighs just one pound. Combined with powerful new iPad features in iOS 11 coming this fall, like the all-new Files app, customizable Dock, improved multitasking and deeper integration of Apple Pencil, iPad Pro gives users the ability to be even more productive and creative.

“These are by far the most powerful iPads we’ve ever created with the world’s most advanced displays featuring ProMotion, the powerful new A10X Fusion chip and the advanced camera system of iPhone 7,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Product Marketing. “Together with iOS 11 these new iPad Pro models will radically change what users can do with iPad.”

The stunning, redesigned Retina display in iPad Pro features ProMotion, a new technology that delivers refresh rates of up to 120Hz for fluid scrolling, greater responsiveness and smoother motion content. With ProMotion, Apple Pencil is even more responsive with an industry-best, 20-millisecond latency for even more fluid and natural drawing. ProMotion also improves display quality and reduces power consumption by automatically adjusting the display refresh rate to match the movement of the content.

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iOS 11 preview

Apple also previewed iOS 11, a major update to the mobile operating system, bringing new experiences and hundreds of features to iPhone and iPad this fall. iOS 11 is the biggest software release ever for iPad, with powerful multitasking features, the Files app and more ways to use Apple Pencil. Augmented reality is coming to hundreds of millions of iOS devices with a new platform for developers to build apps that let users place virtual content on top of real-world scenes.

CoreML gives developers on-device machine learning capabilities so they can easily make apps that will predict, learn and become more intelligent. Additional features include the ability to pay friends using Apple Pay, Do Not Disturb while driving to help users stay more focused on the road, even more intelligence and a new voice for Siri and new professional capabilities to Photos and Camera. iOS 11 is available as a developer preview today and will be a free software update for iPhone and iPad this fall.

“With iOS 11, we’re delivering the biggest AR platform in the world, and it’s available today for developers to begin building AR experiences using ARKit for hundreds of millions of iPhone and iPad users,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering. “iOS 11 gives iPad users the powerful app functionality they need to take advantage of everything iPad is capable of, and brings hundreds of new features and incredible updates to the iOS apps iPhone and iPad users enjoy every day.”

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MacBook and MacBook Pro updated

Apple also updated its iMac line with up to three times more powerful graphics, faster processors, Thunderbolt 3, faster storage options and brighter Retina displays, and added a Retina 4K display and discrete graphics to the $1,299 (US) 21.5-inch iMac. With its incredibly thin and seamless enclosure, fast processors and storage and stunning Retina display, iMac sets the gold standard for desktops.

iMac delivers powerful performance for 3D graphics, video editing and gaming, and with macOS High Sierra coming this fall, iMac becomes a great platform for virtual reality content creation. Apple also today updated MacBook and MacBook Pro with faster processors, added faster SSDs to MacBook and introduced a new $1,299 (US) 13-inch MacBook Pro.

“With major updates to iMac, and a refresh of our MacBook and MacBook Pro lines, the Mac is stronger than ever,” said John Ternus, Apple’s vice president of Hardware Engineering. “Today iMac gets a huge graphics performance increase, faster CPU performance, Thunderbolt 3 and a brighter Retina display with support for 1 billion colors. We’re also increasing CPU and SSD speed on MacBook, adding faster processors and making faster graphics standard on our 15-inch MacBook Pro and introducing a new $1,299 (US) 13-inch MacBook Pro.”

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iMac Pro preview

Apple also gave a sneak peek of iMac Pro, an entirely new workstation-class product line designed for pro users with the most demanding workflows. The all-new iMac Pro, with its gorgeous 27-inch Retina 5K display, up to 18-core Xeon processors and up to 22 Teraflops of graphics computation, is the most powerful Mac ever made.

Featuring a stunning new space gray enclosure, iMac Pro packs incredible performance for advanced graphics editing, virtual reality content creation and real-time 3D rendering. iMac Pro is scheduled to ship in December starting at $4,999 (US).

In addition to the new iMac Pro, Apple is working on a completely redesigned, next-generation Mac Pro architected for pro customers who need the highest-end, high-throughput system in a modular design, as well as a new high-end pro display.

“We’re thrilled to give developers and customers a sneak peek at iMac Pro. This will be our fastest and most powerful Mac ever, which brings workstation-class computing to iMac for the first time,” said John Ternus, Apple’s vice president of Hardware Engineering. “We reengineered the whole system and designed an entirely new thermal architecture to pack extraordinary performance into the elegant, quiet iMac enclosure our customers love — iMac Pro is a huge step forward and there’s never been anything like it.”

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Published in Gadget