voice control

tvOS 9.2 will fix the new Apple TV’s big frustration

tvOS 9.2 will fix the new Apple TV’s big frustration

Apple is addressing one of the latest Apple TV's biggest headaches, with a beta of the newest version of tvOS for the set-top box previewing an extra Siri feature. Currently available to beta testers and registered developers, tvOS 9.2 beta 3 includes a number of hotly-anticipated features like homescreen folder support, but it's one simple usability fix that is likely to interest users the most.

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Alexa arrives on Amazon’s first-gen Fire TV

Alexa arrives on Amazon’s first-gen Fire TV

Owners of the first generation of the Amazon Fire TV are in for some good news: Amazon is bringing its Alexa digital assistant to the set-top box with a new firmware update rolling out over the next few weeks. First-gen Fire TV users may have been feeling out of the loop lately, with Amazon focusing on the new 4K model, not mention Alexa already being brought the second-gen Fire TV last fall. Fortunately the voice-based assistant is also coming to the original Fire TV Stick as well.

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Amazon Echo about to control smart thermostats

Amazon Echo about to control smart thermostats

Amazon's strangest product is about to connect to one of the most out-of-nowhere devices in the smart home today. Amazon Echo is said by sources close to the subject (who wish to remain anonymous) to be working with smart thermostats soon. This means that users will be able to ask Amazon Echo's smart assistant system Alexa to turn of their heat or turn the temperature cooler, for starters. After that, the smart temperature is the limit - all you need to do is ask.

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Nuance Mix brings voice control to any app, Internet of Things device

Nuance Mix brings voice control to any app, Internet of Things device

Nuance, the software company behind the Dragon dictation app, has announced a new platform dubbed Nuance Mix, which will allow developers to add language detection and voice control to their own apps, in addition to smart home and Internet of Things (IoT)-connected devices. In terms of our smartphones, Nuance Mix, which is launching today as a beta, could bring voice control to a number of third-party apps, making it available beyond platform-specific tasks like placing a call, searching for directions, or dictating a message.

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Cortana for iPhone debuts for Microsoft’s beta testers

Cortana for iPhone debuts for Microsoft’s beta testers

It was less than a month ago that Microsoft put out the request for those interested in beta testing Cortana for iPhone, and now those lucky enough to be selected are getting notified to download the voice-powered digital assistant. While designed to compete with Apple's own Siri, as well as Google Now, Microsoft's Cortana will be fairly limited on the iPhone in terms of capability, at least compared to the native Windows version.

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Amazon Echo to be sold at over 3,000 US retail stores

Amazon Echo to be sold at over 3,000 US retail stores

With Black Friday quickly approaching in the US, and thus the onslaught of the holiday shopping season, Amazon has just announced that its Echo, the internet-connected speaker and digital assistant, is making a formal move from the online marketplace to the physical retail environment. Amazon says that in the near future over 3,000 stores will begin selling the Echo, including Home Depot, Staples, Sears, BJ’s, P.C. Richard & Son, Brookstone, RadioShack, and Fred Meyer locations.

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Siri answers music chart questions, but only for Apple Music subscribers

Siri answers music chart questions, but only for Apple Music subscribers

With Apple's release of iOS 9 earlier this year, Siri was given the ability to answer and take action on more requests from users, such showing photos from a specific time and place, or search through email content. However, iOS users this week have discovered one thing that the virtual assistant won't answer unless a condition is met: questions about top songs from past or present music charts.

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AAA study finds hands-free smartphone features still distract drivers

AAA study finds hands-free smartphone features still distract drivers

Google, Apple, and Microsoft have worked hard to implement hands-free features when it comes to safely using their smartphones while behind the wheel, allowing drivers to keep their eyes on the road. While these settings are certainly better than physically holding and interacting with a phone while driving, it turns out they're not quite as safe as we all thought. A new study from the University of Utah and AAA (American Automobile Association) has found that voice commands can still be very distracting.

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Pebble watches brings Nuance Voice Recognition to the public

Pebble watches brings Nuance Voice Recognition to the public

This week Pebble has brought Nuance Voice Recognition to Pebble Time, Time Steel, and Time Round users. Nuance is powering Pebble's new Dictation API, allowing developers to create voice-friendly apps of all sorts for all of the 2nd-gen Pebble users in the wild. Pebble apps will be able to work with voice recognition and push all manner of commands to apps that do many fine things, like control your smart house and flying your drones around the countryside.

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Nucleus brings intercoms, video calling to the smart home

Nucleus brings intercoms, video calling to the smart home

Nucleus (the name of both the company and the product) is a new device that aims to combine the best of video calling and home intercoms with voice commands. The mini tablet can be mounted to wall or just placed on a counter or table, and be used to connect and communicate with others in just seconds, bypassing even the steps that FaceTime and Skype users must go through before getting into a call.

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