Android Police

Articles Tagged:

personal assistant

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Amazon’s new Dash Wand with Alexa is a real-life magic wand for your kitchen

The next time you run out dish soap, you could add the item to your shopping list via Google Home, or you could ask Alexa to add one to your next AmazonFresh order. You could even pull out a paper and pencil like an Aunt Tillie and write "dish soap" on a real, literal, physical shopping list, before the long and tedious trek to the supermarket. Or, you could grab your magic wand, point it at the empty bottle, and go about your day. Really. That's what Amazon's Dash Wand with Alexa is for, and with a $20 Amazon credit after purchasing, it's basically free. That's magic. 

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[Update: New details from Recode interview] Essential Home is Andy Rubin's answer to Google Home and Amazon Echo

Android co-founder Andy Rubin finally unveiled Essential's much-anticipated new phone today, the almost bezel-less PH-1. In an industry besieged by leaks, it's rare for any device to be launched these days without knowing exactly what it'll look like. Not only did Essential manage to keep the PH-1 pretty much a secret, except for the teaser images they released themselves, they also manage to complete conceal the fact that they would be announcing another full-fledged product at the same time. Much to everyone's surprise, we've now been introduced to Essential Home, the company's smart assistant competitor.

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Over a year later, Facebook's M assistant finally makes its way into Messenger

Earlier today Facebook launched their new M assistant service in Messenger on iOS and Android for the US (with other countries to come). Much like Google Assistant in Allo it's meant to drop in at convenient points in a conversation to give you shortcuts and tools to simplify things.

Facebook announced M well over a year ago, jumping a bit late on the bandwagon of personal assistants, but allegedly theirs is at least partially driven or overseen by real living human beings, which sets it apart from the others in no small way. If they manage to leverage enough other modern tech buzzwords like AI, machine learning, and perhaps some synergy for flavor, it may even be of some use.

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Cortana learns how to keep you on track, even if you forget to ask

We've all forgotten to do things that we promised to do. Luckily, we have these fancy personal assistants to help us stay on course. Cortana, Microsoft's offering (and whose name is way cooler than the actual product), is learning via machine learning to remind you of things... without you even asking.

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Sony's intelligent personal assistant and bluetooth bud Xperia Ear is now up for pre-order in Europe

We've known about the Sony Xperia Ear since February when it was announced at MWC along with 3 other prototype projects. At the time, Sony said it was coming late in the summer, but the date was later postponed to November, and here we are. The Xperia Ear is now available for pre-order exclusively on the Xperia Store online in Europe. It'll cost GBP 179 in the UK and EUR 199 in France, Spain, Germany, and other European countries.

So what's the Xperia Ear? It's a Bluetooth headset, but it's not made for music as much as it's a personal assistant living inside your ear.

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[Rumor] Google Is Working On An Amazon Echo Competitor Codenamed "Chirp"

About two months ago, when Amazon announced two new Alexa-powered devices, the Echo Dot and Amazon Tap, many of you voiced the same thought: this is the kind of product Google should be working on. With "OK Google" commands being some of the most powerful voice search and personal assistants on the market, Google shouldn't have a lot of trouble inviting itself into your home and living room or making automation independent from your phone and more integrated with your life.

At the time, we knew (check Artem's comment) that Google was indeed working on an Echo competitor, codenamed "Chirp," and we were rooting for a Google I/O announcement.

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[Update: US And China Only] Cortana Exits Public Beta And Is Now Officially Available For Android

You could think of Cortana as Microsoft Now. We Android users ask Google questions by default, but when you're on a modern Windows device, Cortana's the one who will chime in with an answer.

Microsoft's plans to bring Cortana to Android has been no secret. A leaked APK hit the web back in July. The public beta entered the Play Store around a month later. Now the official release is ready for all.

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Yahoo To Reportedly Take On Google Now, Siri, And Cortana With Its Own Personal Assistant, Code-Named Index

Search engines are been there, done that these days. To really compete, you need your own voice assistant that can do the searching for us, then regurgitate this information using a friendly voice. Business Insider reports that, in a conference call to report Yahoo's first quarter earnings on Tuesday, CEO Marissa Mayer mentioned her company's plans to take on personal assistants such as Google Now, Apple's Siri, and Microsoft's Cortana. The site claims that the project is currently code-named Index.

On the call, Mayer said:

"Those products are really heavily differentiated both from each other as well as from the historic legacy products, and so that's really where we see an opportunity to play in something that's mobile.

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Want An Invite Code For The Friday Personal Assistant App We Previewed? Come On In, Because We've Got 50 Of Them

A few days ago I previewed an interesting analytics app called Friday which catalogues all the events on your phone into an easily digestible format. Friday generated quite a bit of interest, but due to its alpha status, was invite-only, thus not letting any of you without an invite give it a proper try. After discussing the situation with Friday's developers, we managed to convince them to provide Android Police readers with 50 invites.

If you would like an invite to use the Friday app do the following: on the Friday website, enter your email address. On the next page, in the field that says "why do you want to try out Friday?" input: "AP FOLLOWERS".

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