Apple is teasing updates to its Siri personal assistant that may include more advanced AI, mesh networking and a new voice, based on statements released by the company. The updates will be explained at a conference in San Jose in June.
Technology has played a key role in expansion at Starbucks and tech innovation remains on the front burner as the coffee chain works to increase traffic and sales. "They have a test, learn, and adjust mentality; they embrace change, and they don't worry about being perfect," said Tom Kneubuehl, an executive at UK-based cloud technology firm Preoday.
Amazon is rolling out an app store aimed at professional sellers. The Marketplace Appstore will offer third-party apps in the North American market and include tools for an array of tasks serving these sellers.
Emerging technologies such as facial recognition and robotics can help streamline operations and enhance the guest experience, panelists said during a session at The National Restaurant Association Show. Global trends expert Daniel Burrus moderated the panel discussion that included the chief executives of Bear Robotics and Cali Group, who showcased new technologies being tested in restaurants.
Comcast has rolled out an insurance pilot program in Houston that offers discounts to consumers using Xfinity Home services. Customers of insurance broker Hippo will be able to receive additional savings when they add smart safety devices such as smoke detectors to their networks.
Preorders for Sony's 10.3-inch Digital Paper E Ink slate are open, though the company has not announced a ship date for the anticipated device. The 10.3-inch E Ink slate is a smaller, cheaper version of the 13.3-inch Digital Paper E Ink tablet and retails for $600.
Boost mobile founder Peter Adderton has spoken out against the $26.5 billion proposed T-Mobile-Sprint merger, arguing that Boost and MetroPCS should be spun off from parent companies Sprint and T-Mobile, respectively. Adderton argues that the merger would be bad for the prepaid market and that the combined company would have a "significant incentive" to restrict network access to MVNOs.
Consumer electronics retailers doubled collective sales and have seen a 3.3% increase over 2017, per TWICE's latest Top 100 CE Retailers Report, as strong employment and consumer spending fueled growth despite uncertainties surrounding a new administration. On top of that, sell-through figures for both CE hardware and software hit $140 billion.
Coca-Cola has unveiled a fountain soft-drink dispenser that lets consumers create custom drinks using their smartphones. The machine, dubbed the Freestyle 9100, uses Bluetooth technology, and other features that could be unlocked in the future would let users place voice orders.
A growing group of startups that includes Eat Club and Peach contracts with companies to deliver lunch orders from local restaurants to office workers. The startups provide curated menus and take orders in advance, then they either make the deliveries, farm them out to delivery companies or place the orders for delivery with the restaurants.
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