Google’s Bot-in-a-Box Brings Conversational AI to Enterprises

Google Cloud recently unveiled a new AI-powered service product named Bot-in-a-Box. The feature, available via Google Cloud Platform (GCP) Business Messages, will help enterprises easily manage conversations with their customers. Bot-in-a-Box creates chatbots that can naturally respond to customers’ questions by using Google’s Dialogflow software. The conversational bot does not require any additional coding but will learn directly from businesses’ customer service data. The new product is expected to cut the customer service budget for businesses and improve the service level of chat function on GCP Business Messages. Continue reading Google’s Bot-in-a-Box Brings Conversational AI to Enterprises

Reddit Integrates Dubsmash Video Features into Its Own App

Reddit is shutting down its short-form video platform, Dubsmash, on February 22, 2022. As a result, Dubsmash will no longer be available to download from Apple’s App Store or the Google Play Store, and the downloaded app will cease to function. After acquiring Dubsmash in 2020, Reddit has been working on integrating its own video-sharing functions with Dubsmash. The integrated version will add several new features, including creative video editing, voice-over, and multiple filters for users to apply to their short clips. In addition, a new video streaming feature was added to the app exclusively for iOS users back in August. Continue reading Reddit Integrates Dubsmash Video Features into Its Own App

The Sundance Film Festival Advances Tech for Hybrid Model

The Sundance Film Festival is returning to Park City, Utah in January after holding its last annual event entirely online. The 2022 Festival will introduce a new hybrid format that will expand The Spaceship, a virtual venue of the New Frontier exhibition where attendees can socialize and visit virtual reality and mixed reality installations. Sundance is also introducing a new Biodigital Bridge, a human-scale screen that will connect “festivalgoers in Park City and those attending The Spaceship online from anywhere in the world — establishing the Festival as a metaverse that overlays the physical event with a virtual one.” Continue reading The Sundance Film Festival Advances Tech for Hybrid Model

Tidal Launches New Music Tiers, Model to Pay Artists Directly

Tidal unveiled an upgrade to its paid music plan and introduced two new plans — a cost-free tier (a first for the platform) and Tidal HiFi Plus. The standard $9.99-per-month subscription, now called Tidal HiFi, provides users with lossless and high-resolution audio and customized listening insights through features such as Tidal Connect and My Activity. With the new $19.99-per-month Tidal HiFi Plus, users get immersive formats including Dolby Atmos and Sony 360 Reality Audio as well as exclusive access to Tidal’s Master Quality Authenticated recordings. Tidal also launched an innovative direct-to-artist payments program with plans to introduce fan-centered royalties next year. Continue reading Tidal Launches New Music Tiers, Model to Pay Artists Directly

Amazon Prime Video Is First to Launch a Clip-Sharing Feature

Amazon is adding an interactive clip-sharing feature to its Prime Video streaming service that allows users to share short video clips from Amazon Originals via social media and direct message. The feature is available for Amazon series “The Boys,” “The Wilds,” “Invincible” and “Fairfax,” with plans to expand to other original TV shows and movies in the future. Users can click on the “Share a clip” button while watching the content, and the app will generate a 30-second clip. Amazon is the first major streaming platform to introduce such a video-sharing feature. For the initial rollout, the feature is only available for iOS users in the U.S. Continue reading Amazon Prime Video Is First to Launch a Clip-Sharing Feature

Facebook Is Criticized for Continuing to Collect Data of Teens

After Facebook promised in July that it would limit its algorithms that track online behavior of users under 18 as a step toward curtailing a method used by advertisers to target children and teenagers, the social giant is again being accused of collecting such data. Facebook was found harvesting data of young users through its ad delivery system, according to a report published by advocacy groups Fairplay, Global Action Plan and Reset Australia. The research suggests that Facebook is maintaining the ability to track younger users so that it can maximize engagement and increase advertising revenue. Continue reading Facebook Is Criticized for Continuing to Collect Data of Teens