Items tagged with (NASDAQ:AMZN)

Amazon's foray into the digital assistant arena is an interesting one. Apple didn't invent the concept, but it popularized the idea when it bought the technology behind Siri and integrated into iOS with the release of the iPhone 4S. The concept caught on in the mobile world, but Amazon figured (correctly) that it could work in a smart speaker as well. Alexa was born, and now just a little over two years later, Alexa has blossomed with more than 10,000 skills available. David Isbitski, chief evangelist for Alexa and Echo at Amazon, announced the milestone on Thursday in a blog post. To add some... Read more...
If you are planning a new build around one of AMD's newfangled Ryzen processors and want to get a head start, you can start buying parts now. AMD's top three Ryzen processors—Ryzen 7 1800X, Ryzen 7 1700X, and Ryzen 7 1700—are all available to pre-order now and will release on March 2. A bevy of compatible AM4 platform motherboards are out in the wild, as well. It is a bit of gamble buying into an architecture before all the performance numbers are revealed, though to AMD's credit, all of the information to this point—leaked and official—paints a positive light around Ryzen. According to AMD's own... Read more...
Is Amazon’s Alexa protected under the First Amendment of the United States? As part of an ongoing homicide investigation, Amazon argues that any information contained or recorded by the device is protected under “freedom of speech”. The corporation claims that it is not trying to obstruct the investigation, but protect the privacy rights of its customers. James Andrew Bates of Bentonville, Arkansas has been accused of drowning his friend Victor Collins in a hot tub back in November 2015. Bates and Collins had been drinking and watching football with two other friends the night the alleged murder... Read more...
AMD was hoping its Ryzen architecture would return the company to prominence in the enthusiast market and give power users something other than Intel brand chips to consider. The former remains to be seen, but the latter is already taking place. Following AMD's Ryzen Tech Day event yesterday in which the Sunnyvale chip designer announced pre-order availability of its top three Ryzen processors, consumers wasted no time making all three SKUs best sellers on Amazon. Amazon's list of best selling CPUs is now headlined by AMD'z Ryzen 7 1700X. The retail boxed processor is available to pre-order for... Read more...
There’s no question that smart assistants like the Amazon Echo and Echo Dot (and more recently, Google Home) have become indispensable tools for millions of homeowners over the past few years. The devices can be easily integrated into existing smart home control systems and can be expanded with new “skills” that add functionality. According to a new report, both Amazon and Google are looking to add the ability to place phone calls from their respective devices. The Wall Street Journal says that such functionality could arrive as soon as this year, but many roadblocks stand in the way of making... Read more...
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It was not all that long ago when collaborating with co-workers meant sitting in a board room environment while someone scribbles on a dry erase board. Times have changed. Collaboration these days can mean working with people from all corners of the globe. To make things easier and ultimately more productive, Amazon today announced a new unified communications service called Amazon Chime. This isn't new territory by any means, though Amazon argues that "most meetings solutions are disappointing." Amazon threw shade on the competition by calling existing solutions "clunky and hard to use," oftentimes... Read more...
It seems that everything these days is gaining voice control, and we're okay with that. After all, it's much easier to bark out a command to our smartphone or other electronic gadget rather than navigate through menus and apps. Well, that level of convenience is now part of Plex, the popular media player software. Plex has partnered up with Amazon by creating a Plex Skill for Alexa devices. Owners of an Alexa-enabled device (Echo, Echo Dot, Tap, Fire TV, or Fire tablet) can leverage the Plex Skill to control their media. Maybe you have a specific movie in mind. You could say, "Alexa, ask Plex to... Read more...
Amazon is the undisputed leader in online retail, with the company offering customers access to just about any product imaginable under the sun. Many of those products can be delivered to your house within a few hours’ time, or at most two days, if you subscribe to the $99/year Amazon Prime subscription service. Needless to say, Americans’ penchant for ordering anything and everything from Amazon means that the company also burns a lot of cash to pay shippers like FedEx, UPS and the US Postal Service (USPS). So, what is a company like Amazon to do? For starters, the company is looking to build... Read more...
Walmart is ending a free two-day shipping program it was piloting called ShippingPass, one that was intended to compete with Amazon's Prime service, though that's actually good news for customers. Instead of charging $49 per year for the benefit of expedited shipping on online orders, the company has chosen to offer free two-day shipping to home and stores on millions of items without a membership fee. The caveat is that there is a minimum purchase required for free shipping to homes, which Walmart lowered from $50 to $35. Subscribers to Amazon Prime do not have to worry about making a minimum... Read more...
Starbucks has always been at the forefront of high-tech mobile integration with its ordering system and other aspects of its retail stores. The coffee chain was quick to adopt wireless payments, and has even opened its store up to newfangled mobile crazes like Pokémon Go. Now, the company is opening up its app to allow ordering your favorite drinks or food items via voice or messaging. Starbucks has enabled the functionality in an iOS beta of its mobile app, allowing you to simply speak your order and even make super-fancy customizations thanks to the use of artificial intelligence (AI). The built-in... Read more...
Secret projects seemed to abound this past week. First, Facebook published job listings for their mysterious B8 team, and now Amazon is seeking permission from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for secret mobile wireless tests. Amazon claims that the issuance of an experimental license is in “public interest, convenience, and necessity”. Amazon did not specify what it would be testing, but indicated that the prototypes were designed to support “innovative communications capabilities and functionalities”. Furthermore, former NASA astronaut and current Prime Air manager Neil Woodward has... Read more...
Are you on the job market? Amazon could be your future employer. The corporation has promised to create 100,000 full-time positions in the United States over the next eighteen months. The new positions will be available to people of varying skill levels and education. Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and CEO, remarked, “Innovation is one of our guiding principles at Amazon, and it’s created hundreds of thousands of American jobs. These jobs are not just in our Seattle headquarters or in Silicon Valley—they’re in our customer service network, fulfillment centers and other facilities in local communities... Read more...
Amazon's Alexa is incredibly useful. It can tell you the weather, update your calendar, and accidentally order a dollhouse while listening to your local news broadcast. San Diego channel CW6 was reporting about a child who “accidentally” bought a dollhouse and four pounds of cookies through their Amazon Echo. News anchor Jim Patton remarked, “I love the little girl, saying ‘Alexa ordered me a dollhouse’”. Viewers soon started calling into the station complaining that Patton’s statement made their devices try to order a dollhouse. Accidental orders happen surprisingly often. Alexa does adapt to... Read more...
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