WWDC: Apple Intelligence Brings AI to iPhone, iPad and Mac

Apple has entered into a deal with OpenAI to deliver GTP-4o to its devices, which beginning this fall will feature Apple Intelligence, or “AI.” Announced during this week’s WWDC 2024, Apple Intelligence is “deeply integrated into iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia,” according to the company. The new AI features will be available to users of the iPhone 15 Pro, or any devices powered by M1 or newer chips “to understand and create language and images, take action across apps, and draw from personal context to simplify and accelerate everyday tasks.” Continue reading WWDC: Apple Intelligence Brings AI to iPhone, iPad and Mac

Google Teams with Magic Leap in Another Run at AR Glasses

Magic Leap and Google have entered into a strategic partnership to develop augmented reality solutions, combining Magic Leap’s optics expertise with Google’s technology platforms. “By combining efforts, we can foster the future of the XR ecosystem with unique and innovative product offerings.” Google VP and General Manager of AR/XR Shahram Izadi said of the union, seen by some as effort by Google to jumpstart an XR business that could someday be competitive with offerings from Meta, Microsoft and now Apple. The company was an early mover in the space, with Google Cardboard and Google Glass, but dropped out. Continue reading Google Teams with Magic Leap in Another Run at AR Glasses

Acer, Asus, HP First to Offer Chromebook Plus with Google AI

Not to be outdone by Windows Copilot+ PCs, Google is also bringing AI to the Chromebook, which will be infused with Gemini’s generative smarts via companies including Acer, HP and Asus. “New Google AI and gaming features are available on Chromebook Plus,” says the Alphabet company, noting “you can now write like a pro with Help Me Write, supercharge your ideas with Gemini, edit photos in a snap with Magic Editor, and more — all on Chromebook Plus laptops starting at $350.” Google, which partially integrated Gemini with the Chrome browser, teased AI for ChromeOS last fall. Continue reading Acer, Asus, HP First to Offer Chromebook Plus with Google AI

Meta Advances Multimodal Model Architecture with Chameleon

Meta Platforms has unveiled its first natively multimodal model, Chameleon, which observers say can make it competitive with frontier model firms. Although Chameleon is not yet released, Meta says internal research indicates it outperforms the company’s own Llama 2 in text-only tasks and “matches or exceeds the performance of much larger models” including Google’s Gemini Pro and OpenAI’s GPT-4V in a mixed-modal generation evaluation “where either the prompt or outputs contain mixed sequences of both images and text.” In addition, Meta calls Chameleon’s image generation “non-trivial,” noting that’s “all in a single model.” Continue reading Meta Advances Multimodal Model Architecture with Chameleon

Amazon to Upgrade Alexa with AI, May Add Subscription Fee

Amazon is planning to add generative artificial intelligence to its decade-old voice assistant, Alexa, which will require a monthly fee to offset the cost of the technology, according to reports. Although the new Alexa price plan has not been disclosed, it is not expected to be included in the $139 yearly Amazon Prime plan. The possible move comes as Apple is also undergoing an AI overhaul of its voice assistant, Siri. Once considered precocious by many consumers, Siri and Alexa are now playing catch-up to AI assistants from leaders in the space including Google, Microsoft and OpenAI. Continue reading Amazon to Upgrade Alexa with AI, May Add Subscription Fee

Firebase Genkit: Developer Framework for AI-Powered Apps

Google is offering developers a toolkit for incorporating generative AI features into mobile and web applications. Firebase Genkit, an open-source framework, is available now in beta. Blending models, cloud services, agents, data sources and more in a “code-centric approach” developers are used to, the Genkit makes building and debugging for AI easier, according to Google. The first release is built for JavaScript and TypeScript developers, making building AI-powered apps available to professionals who specialize in building server-side applications using the Node.js JavaScript runtime. Continue reading Firebase Genkit: Developer Framework for AI-Powered Apps

Google Teases Astra AI Assistant and Debuts Gemini 1.5 Pro

Google is showing off a developmental chatbot it says represents the future of AI assistants. Called Project Astra, it has the ability to “see” and “hear,” remembering the information ingested, which it can then answer questions about — from simple queries such as “Where did I leave my glasses?” to unpacking and explaining computer code. Demonstrated at the Google I/O conference this week, Astra understands the world “just like people do” and is able to converse naturally, in real time. The company says some Project Astra features may come to Gemini late this year. Continue reading Google Teases Astra AI Assistant and Debuts Gemini 1.5 Pro

Google Ups AI Quotient with Search-Optimized Gemini Model

Google has infused search with more Gemini AI, adding expanded AI Overviews and more planning and research capabilities. “Ask whatever’s on your mind or whatever you need to get done — from researching to planning to brainstorming — and Google will take care of the legwork” culling from “a knowledge base of billions of facts about people, places and things,” explained Google and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai at the Google I/O developer conference. AI Overviews will roll out to all U.S. users this week. Coming soon are customizable AI Overview options that can simplify language or add more detail. Continue reading Google Ups AI Quotient with Search-Optimized Gemini Model

OpenAI Unveils Faster AI Model, Desktop Version of ChatGPT

OpenAI CTO Mira Murati announced during a live-streamed event today that the company is launching an updated version of its GPT-4 model that powers OpenAI’s popular chatbot. The new flagship AI model, GPT-4o is reportedly “much faster” and offers improved text, voice and vision capabilities. Murati said GPT-4o will be free to all users, while Plus users will enjoy “up to five times the capacity limits” available to free users. According to OpenAI, the new AI model “can respond to audio inputs in as little as 232 milliseconds, with an average of 320 milliseconds, which is similar to human response time in a conversation.” Continue reading OpenAI Unveils Faster AI Model, Desktop Version of ChatGPT

Google Taps AI for Its ‘Threat Intelligence’ Cybersecurity Plan

Google introduced Threat Intelligence at the RSA Conference in San Francisco this week. Claiming actionable information at “visibility only Google can deliver, based on billions of signals across devices and emails,” Threat Intelligence draws on the capabilities of the company’s Gemini LLMs, Mandiant cybersecurity arm, and cloud-based VirusTotal tool. An AI-powered Gemini agent “provides conversational search” across the repository of Threat Intelligence, “enabling customers to gain insights and protect themselves from threats faster than ever before,” Google says in a move to empower even small teams without IT departments with threat protection. Continue reading Google Taps AI for Its ‘Threat Intelligence’ Cybersecurity Plan

Anthropic Debuts Enterprise Plan, Free Claude App for iPhone

Anthropic has launched a paid tier catering to business customers as well as a free mobile app for iOS users featuring its chatbot Claude. The generative AI startup — which has backing from Amazon, Google and Salesforce — is positioning itself to compete with companies like OpenAI, Google and Microsoft that focus on enterprise plans for revenue while also offering individual plans. Anthropic’s Team plan starts at $30 per user per month, on par with competing enterprise products, and requires a minimum of five seats. Anthropic has been beta testing Team over the past few quarters in industries including legal, tech and healthcare. Continue reading Anthropic Debuts Enterprise Plan, Free Claude App for iPhone

Alphabet Profit Up 57 Percent, Prompting First-Ever Dividend

Alphabet reported revenue of $80.5 billion for Q1, a 15 percent increase fueled largely by online advertising from Google Search and YouTube. The figure topped analyst estimates of $78.8 billion. Profit soared, rising 57 percent to more than $23.6 billion, wildly overperforming the forecast of $18.9 billion. The strong performance resulted in Alphabet announcing its first ever shareholder dividend, at 20 cents per share, which pays out on June 17. Alphabet’s board approved a $70 billion stock repurchase program, and the news-filled earnings event drove Alphabet shares up 13 percent in after-hours trading. Continue reading Alphabet Profit Up 57 Percent, Prompting First-Ever Dividend

Google Merges Android and Hardware Units for AI Efficiency

Google is implementing an internal reorganization that combines its Android and hardware teams. Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced a new Platforms & Devices team headed by Rick Osterloh, which includes Android, Chrome, ChromeOS, Photos and all Pixel products. Pichai says the move will help speed development. Osterloh’s mandate is full-stack platform development that smoothly incorporates AI across all Google platforms, including smartphones, TVs and anything with Android OS. Hiroshi Lockheimer, who previously ran ops for Android, Chrome and ChromeOS, moves on to other projects at Google and Alphabet. Continue reading Google Merges Android and Hardware Units for AI Efficiency

Google Imagen 2 Now Generates 4-Second Clips on Vertex AI

During Google Cloud Next 2024 in Las Vegas, Google announced an updated version of its text-to-image generator Imagen 2 on Vertex AI that has the ability to generate video clips of up to four seconds. Google calls this feature “text-to-live images,” and it essentially delivers animated GIFs at 24 fps and 360×640 pixel resolution, though Google says there will be “continuous enhancements.” Imagen 2 can also generate text, emblems and logos in different languages, and has the ability to overlay those elements on existing images like business cards, apparel and products. Continue reading Google Imagen 2 Now Generates 4-Second Clips on Vertex AI

Google Offers Public Preview of Gemini Pro for Cloud Clients

Google is moving its most powerful artificial intelligence model, Gemini 1.5 Pro, into public preview for developers and Google Cloud customers. Gemini 1.5 Pro includes what Google claims is a breakthrough in long context understanding, with the ability to run 1 million tokens of information “opening up new possibilities for enterprises to create, discover and build using AI.” Gemini’s multimodal capabilities allow it to process audio, video, text, code and more, which when combined with long context, “enables enterprises to do things that just weren’t possible with AI before,” according to Google. Continue reading Google Offers Public Preview of Gemini Pro for Cloud Clients