I've owned an iPhone every year since its 2007 debut. Every one. The reward for such reckless upgrading has been a sense of the iPhone's evolution over those years. What started as a device that had not many apps to speak of, but dripped futurism, has become an always-on, location-aware, frighteningly integral part of my nervous system.
Leaked from today's 404 episode:
- Nokia again faces make-or-break point with new Lumia phones.
- CNET First Take: Nokia Lumia 820.
- CNET First Take: Nokia Lumia 920.
- Why Nokia nixed an SD card slot for the Lumia 920.
- The secret behind Nokia's 41-megapixel camera phone.
- Nokia's new PureView image stabilizer is amazingly faked in this promo video.
- 4Chan goes public with its API, boasting 22 million unique monthly visitors.
- Spike Jonze's new film is about a man who falls in love with his phone.
Compared to Apple's Siri speech-activated personal assistant, IBM's Watson is a genius.
Zooey Deschanel might ask Siri, "Is that rain?"
She might ask Watson, "Who's the author that wrote, 'It was a dark and stormy night'?"
(Edward Bulwer-Lytton, for the literary-minded among you.)
Until now, Watson's tech has been too big to cram into a mobile device. All those smarts takes a room full of servers, an incredible amount of calculations and a thick wire into the electrical mains.
That's about to change.
The power consumption behind Watson's performance is &… Read more
Nuance, a company that plays a part in some of the most well-known speech-recognition services on the market, has unveiled its own intra-app service, called Nina.
With Nina's help, iOS and Android developers can bring speech recognition, text-to-speech, and voice biometrics to their individual applications. Nina works much in the same way as Siri, allowing users to provide voice commands that the technology then follows. And with the open software development kit, Nuance says that it can be integrated quickly into existing apps.
Nuance has played an integral role in Siri's development. Nuance provided technology to Siri before … Read more
Apple's virtual personal assistant Siri has been smacked with yet another lawsuit.
This time around, Taiwan's National Cheng Kung University filed a lawsuit against Apple on Friday, charging the company with violating patents it holds related to voice-to-text technology. The university says that it acquired two patents in 2007 and 2010 in the U.S., and believes that Siri violates those.
Apple is certainly no stranger to Siri lawsuits. Over the last year, the company has been hit with everything from class-action suits complaining of the service's performance to infringement. Earlier this month, Shanghai-based voice application developer … Read more
Apple's Siri has been known to get some queries wrong. But it might have flubbed an advertising opportunity as well.
In a July issue of The Economist, Apple reportedly took out an ad for Siri. In it, users are shown a forest behind a hand holding the iPhone, and a question at the top, saying, "What does poison oak look like?" On the iPhone, Siri provides an answer, but appears to display poison ivy and not poison oak.
Martin Scorsese has become the latest celebrity enlisted by Apple to talk up Siri in a TV commercial.
The commercial, which premiered today, shows the movie director posing rapid-fire questions at the iPhone 4S voice assistant in the back of a New York City taxi cab. Following in the footsteps of Samuel L. Jackson, Zooey Deschanel, and John Malkovich, Scorsese is shown using the feature to review his calendar, reschedule appointments, locate friends, and check local traffic.
The commercial concludes with Scorsese telling Siri how much he likes her and saying that "she's going places."
As happy … Read more
Siri was hailed as a innovation when it was unveiled with the iPhone 4S. But do iPhone owners still talk to her?
In a column for yesterday's New York Times, writer Nick Bilton said he believes the romance may have soured between Siri and her users.
Initially enthused about the new voice assistant, Bilton found that too many of his conversations ended up in a failure to communicate, with Siri either unavailable or unable to provide the right information. And he doesn't seem to be the only one having communication problems with Siri.
Bilton also noted that many … Read more
Another day, another lawsuit out of China targeting one of Apple's products.
This time around, a Shanghai-based voice application developer, Zhizhen Network Technology, has reportedly sued Apple for allegedly infringing a patent it holds related to "a type of instant messaging chat bot system" it calls Xiaoi Bot. The company argues that the patent, which it filed for in August 2004 and was awarded in February 2006, is being violated by Apple's Siri.
Marbridge Daily, which was first to report on the story and obtained a copy of the suit, says that Zhizhen attempted to resolve the issue with Apple out of court in May. … Read more
With Justin Yu still under the weather, The 404 Show once again experiments with Joe Kaminski filling in. We consider ourselves very lucky to have a guest with super-powers on our program. The first power is his knack for going on obscenely long tangents about the most meaningless of topics. The second is the ability to give spoiler-free movie reviews, more specifically of The Amazing Spiderman, which was just released.
Next it's off to a discussion on Android and the fact that only 10-percent of those devices have Ice Cream Sandwich running on them. What's even more confusing is that Jelly Bean (ICS' successor) was just released last week. It's arguably the most annoying Android reality, so we weigh its pros and cons.
Finally, we touch on EA's recent statement that the company will soon be distributing games 100-percent digitally. This shouldn't be much of a surprise, since EA already goes out of the way to combat used game sales (see EA Online Pass).
But perhaps the most exciting news of the day is the introduction of the official 404 trucker hat (pictured above). These bad boys will be available should you come and hang out with us at ComicCon 2012. All the info you need is here. We also highly recommend participating on CNET's ComicCon Twitter Contest for your chance to win a game console. … Read more