siri

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Microsoft will introduce Siri-style voice recognition to the new Xbox, a report has claimed.

Next-generation Xbox users will have the ability to power on the console using voice commands, ask the device questions and use speech-to-text services to write messages, according to the Verge.

Xbox360 with Kinect

The Kinect sensor, meanwhile, will reportedly detect individuals in a room and  recommend appropriate multiplayer games. Users will also be able to resume videos where they left off by using voice commands and ask the device  what games friends are playing.

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After months of rumours, speculation and in some cases just down right nonsense, Apple has finally announces the all new iPad, and I want it.

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picture via Pocket-Lint

A few of the new features include a retina display with 2048 x 1536 pixels, which is the best available on any tablet today. That equates to 3.1 million pixels!!!!

HD video recording is now at 1080p resolution with the rear camera being 5 mega pixels.

The new iSight camera also includes image stabilisation and noise reduction, face detection and auto focus.

It also has an A5X chip, with quad-core graphics.

There is even voice dictation included via a microphone button on the keyboard.

It will have the same 10 hour battery life as the iPad 2 with 9 hours on 4G.

And if you are in an area with 4G there is 4G LTE (shame I am in the UK really).

It will be 9.4mm thick, which is a little thicker than the iPad 2 and will weigh 0.64kg.

The New iPad is priced at just $499 for 16GB, $599 for 32GB, $699 for 64GB. And $629, $729, and $829 for 4G. This is the same prices as for the iPad 2.

And it’s available March 16th in the US and a week later in the UK and Europe.

And pre-orders start today, so go get one ordered!

All I can say is I want, I want, I want!

What about you?

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There is a new app for the iPhone and iPad that helps with your everyday information needs – it’s called Evi, and unlike Siri it will work on other iOS devices apart from the iPhone 4S.

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Evi is the revolutionary artificial intelligence here to help with all of your everyday information needs.

Unlike a search engine, which simply looks for matching words and shows you a list of websites, Evi understands what you want to know and gives back exactly what you’re after.
Need to know where the nearest bank is? Not a problem. Going out for dinner but can’t decide where? She can help with that too. The more you ask, the more she will learn, and thus she is improving all the time.

Life is simpler with Evi.

Features:
• Voice or text input – Chat to Evi in plain English and she will understand
• Local information for UK and USA – Shopping, news, dining and more. Evi knows where you are and gives answers based on your location
• One tap words – Allowing you to build your question super-fast
• Built in browser – No need to swap to a different browser, view web links within Evi’s app
• A learning and adapting intelligence – Rate Evi’s answers to help her learn more about the world
• More than a search engine – Evi takes the searching out of search, able to review and compare nearly a billion facts from her database to give you exactly what you need

http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/evi/id463296609?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

If you are craving Siri like functionality for Windows Phone and more, look no further.

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According to the developer:

Ask Ziggy is your Personal Assistant that goes beyond Siri functionality.

You can Call, Text, Email your contacts, Update Windows Live, Facebook, and Twitter, Get Weather, Stock Values, Flight Statuses, Get Ziggy to do Math, or ask any question you want (i.e. Who is the tallest person?) all by speaking to your phone.

You can even change the voice from male to Female.

The best thing about Ask Ziggy is that it is completely free!

Check out www.ziggybot.com for help.

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[button link="http://www.windowsphone.com/en-US/apps/71970bb1-1de9-46a9-a602-040e1e7356cb" style="download" window="yes"]Download Ask Ziggy now[/button]

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I have been a long time fan of the iPhone, and when the iPhone 4S was released two weeks ago I picked one up. I have now been using it for two weeks and thought I would share some thoughts and experiences of it.

UWHS - iPhone 4S - 3

Siri

Siri is one of the big new features only available on the iPhone 4S (today). Siri enables you to get things done by just asking – for example, you can say you want to add a calendar event or send a text message.

By default Siri is switched off, so you have to enable “him” or “her”.

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Here in the UK we get a Male voice, where as in the US they have the option of a Female voice. You can change it by changing your language setting to English (United States) but then the software looks for certain words and ways of speaking – certain things I asked didn’t work as well when set to US as apposed to UK.

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Siri works quite well, when it works. I cant tell you the number of times it hasn’t worked, or given me some bizarre response.

That being said, the programmers have a real sense of humour and have some responses available to the obvious questions:

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Battery Woes

Oh where do I start???

Having used an iPhone 4 for well over a year, I could get a full days use of it, including having certain location services enabled, and my email accounts set to Push my emails to the phone.

So given that Apple were promising at least an hour additional battery life out of the iPhone 4S I was somewhat surprised how quickly my battery was going down, even when I wasn’t actually doing anything.

It was quite unnerving just sitting watching the battery remaining percentage literally tick down in front of my eyes. I was getting about half a day out of the battery and not actually using the phone that much at all.

For the first time in a very long time I saw the dreaded red battery logo and my phone shut down.

Needless to say I wasn’t very happy.

I did some quick research and noticed that I wasn’t the only person having this problem.

Some people were saying it was expected as the 4S has a more powerful processor (ok, but Apple said it had at least an hours MORE battery, not LESS).

Others advised turning off various services – ok, I thought, I can do that.

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So I turned off a few things and the battery still went down quickly.

In the end I had to turn off the following just to get a “working” day’s use of the phone (at that’s not even using the phone that much as an actual phone):

  • Siri
  • all Location Services
  • Wireless
  • Bluetooth
  • Push email
  • and a few other things

so basically I have to turn off most of the functionality that makes having an iPhone worth having. Basically I am almost back to having just “a phone to make phone calls”.

So Apple, hurry up and release a fix already!

Final Thoughts

So, the question I get asked the most at the moment is “was it worth upgrading from the iPhone 4”? Well, to be honest, the answer today is No, it wasn’t. At least, not today. The battery issue is frustrating me the most. I’m not seeing significant improvement in the speeds (although I am seeing some) and while Siri is fun for a but, ultimately right now, here in the UK, it’s not that much use.

I am happy with the camera functionality (not that I use the camera that much, but it’s certainly nice to have it available), plus the HD video shooting capability is great.

If you have an iPhone 3 or 3GS, then it certainly is worth upgrading – no question about it.

I assume that Apple will release an update at some point soon to fix the battery issues, they always do.

Don’t get me wrong, I am happy with the 4S, I’m just not as happy as I could be…..

Do you have an iPhone 4S? What do you think?

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