Apple apparently assembling team of speech-recognition experts to create neural network-powered Siri

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, July 1st, 2014, 10:16
Category: News, Software

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It’s time to have a more meaningful chat with Siri.

Per Wired, Apple is apparently assembling a team of A-list speech recognition researchers, including high-ranking employees from Nuance, to create an in-house Siri engine based on neural networking.

The article states that Apple has created a group of software engineers and researchers from Nuance, the firm responsible for Siri’s voice-recognition functionality, as well as other companies to work toward a next-generation backbone for the virtual assistant.

The publication points to a number of Apple hires over the past few years, including Nuance’s former vice president of research Larry Gillick and Gunnar Evermann, who is currently working as Siri’s speech project manager.
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Apple releases iOS 7.1.2 update

Posted by:
Date: Monday, June 30th, 2014, 16:41
Category: iOS, iPad, iPad Air, iPad mini, iPhone, iPod Touch, News, Software

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This could prove helpful.

On Monday, Apple released iOS 7.1.2, the latest version of the operating system for its iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices.

The new version, a 1.44 gigabyte download via Software Update, adds the following fixes and changes:
- Improves iBeacon connectivity and stability.

- Fixes a bug with data transfer for some 3rd party accessories, including bar code scanners.

- Corrects an issue with data protection class of Mail attachments.

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Rumor: Apple to incorporate 128GB capacity into 5.5-inch iPhone 6 model, limit storage space to 64GB for 4.7-inch model

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, June 26th, 2014, 12:53
Category: Hardware, iPhone, Rumor

If you want the 128GB iPhone 6, you’ll have to buy it in the larger 5.5-inch size.

Per Chinese Apple blog Feng.com, Apple will constrain its 128GB capacity iPhone to the 5.5-inch version of the upcoming handset, implying that the 4.7-inch version’s maximum capacity will be 64GB.

The report comes on the heels of another questionable rumor from Wednesday that predicted Apple’s next iPhone will launch on September 19th.

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Rumor: Apple to release iOS 8 beta 3 to developer community on July 8th

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, June 26th, 2014, 12:02
Category: iOS, Rumor, Software

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iOS 8 is coming that much closer to fruition, but may be a bit behind schedule.

Per Boy Genius Report and AppleInsider, a new rumor has the third beta of Apple’s iOS 8 operating system as scheduled for release to the developer community on Tuesday, July 8th.

The report cites “trusted sources”, while the publication itself has been accurate as to this kind of story in the past.

If true, the release date would be later than expected, as Apple traditionally issues new beta builds to developers on a two week schedule. The second beta of iOS 8 was release on June 17, just over two weeks after the launch of beta 1.

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Rumor: Apple to boost Touch ID component production, improve durability of units

Posted by:
Date: Monday, June 23rd, 2014, 11:37
Category: Hardware, iPad, iPhone, Rumor

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The Touch ID sensor in the upcoming iOS devices (including the iPad) will be both more plentiful and more durable.

Per an article in the China Times, manufacturer TSMC will boost its Touch ID production 233 percent to 120 million units. The component will also purportedly become more durable in the process.

It’s been thought that Apple will incorporate the Touch ID sensor in both the rumored 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhone handsets as well as the forthcoming iPad Air and iPad mini generations. Until now Touch ID has been limited to the iPhone 5s, in part because of the limited amount of sapphire available for cover glass. Apple has partnered with GT Advanced on at least one sapphire plant, however, which should make widespread use cost-effective.

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Rumor: iOS 7.1.2 update to include fixes to Mail, security issues, iBeacon support

Posted by:
Date: Monday, June 23rd, 2014, 10:46
Category: iOS, Rumor, security, Software

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Apple’s forthcoming iOS 7.1.2 update may fix an email attachment encryption issue, a lock screen vulnerability and improve iBeacon support along with other minor bug fixes.

Per MacRumors and AppleInsider, an anonymous source has claimed that Apple has distributed iOS 7.1.2 to carrier partners for testing ahead of a release sometime within the next two weeks.

The update supposedly contains a number of bug fixes and security patches, including a resolution to an email encryption issue discovered in April. Security researchers proved the flaw, which prevents email attachments to be saved with proper encryption protection, exists in recent iOS releases as far back as iOS 7.0.4.

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British iOS device repair firm finds connection between third-party USB adapters and damage to iPhone 5 power management components

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Date: Friday, June 20th, 2014, 11:03
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News

You know those nice, cheap third-party iPhone cables you can buy for dirt cheap at the check out line at the convenience store? They might be capable of damaging a power management component in the iPhone 5 handset.

Per iOS device repair firm mendmyl, a series of damaged power management components in Apple’s iPhone 5 handset has been traced back to unofficial USB adapters as well as USB-to-Lightning cables.

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The working theory, though not officially confirmed, is that the third-party charging accessories do not properly regulate electrical current as it flows into the handset, which will then either burn out or render a power distribution component labeled “U2″, which is located just beneath the A6 processor on the iPhone’s logic board. The U2 component routes power to the iPhone 5′s battery and integrated charging controller as well as the sleep/wake button and controls certain USB functions for the handset.

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Will Siri have to answer to Samsung?

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, June 18th, 2014, 08:01
Category: Apple, Business, iPhone, Mac, News, Samsung, Siri, Software

siri-icon-ios7According to The Wall Street Journal (subscription required), the voice-recognition tech company behind Apple’s Siri assistant may be in talks with Samsung to sell its technology to Apple’s most notorious competitor. Nuance has reportedly been in talks with several potential buyers as the company seeks to sell off its highly sought after voice-to-text translation software. According to some sources familiar with one of the companies involved, Samsung and other private-equity firms have been part of discussions surrounding a possible sale of the company. In addition to Siri, Nuance provides the technology behind Dragon Naturally Speaking software for both Mac and PC, as well as Samsung’s own phones, tablets, and wearable devices.

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2nd Gen Apple TV support is dropped in iOS 8

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Date: Wednesday, June 18th, 2014, 08:18
Category: Apple, Apple TV, Hardware, iOS, News

2ndgenappletvBeing an owner of said version of the Apple TV (also formerly of the 1st gen), I find this very disappointing, but not altogether unexpected. The second beta of iOS 8 dropped on Tuesday and according to those who like to dig out any hints of the future that new code may reveal, there is no sign of the 2nd generation Apple TV. For those of you who didn’t know, starting with the release of the first black, hockey puck sized Apple TV, Apple started using the same A4 chip (or a version of it) that was used in the iPhone 4.

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Amazon introduces Prime Music – more value for your $99

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Date: Friday, June 13th, 2014, 08:49
Category: Amazon, Announcement, iOS, Mac, music, Opinion, Review, Services

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Amazon just announced the latest service in its Prime family, Prime Music, which together with Prime Instant Video and Prime Shipping will cost $99 a year. Earlier this year, Amazon increased the the price of a Prime subscription from $79 to $99, but at the time there was no indication that there would be any new features to offset the higher price-tag (unless you count the promise of a sky full of drones).

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