Posted by Darcy Newell on July 25, 2014 11:14 AM
You know about Siri and Google Now, and you may have heard about Microsoft’s recent beta launch of the Cortana intelligent personal assistant with Windows Phone 8.1.
But there’s an even newer, natural language UI-powered, virtual assistant on the scene, ready to respond to users' voice commands for everything from reminders to directions to texting. BlackBerry has announced its plan to launch its own assistant feature this fall, available on the upcoming BlackBerry 10.3 operating system and the much-anticipated smart phone release, the BlackBerry Passport.
According to a post on the Inside BlackBerry blog, this new virtual assistant feature will boast capabilities currently unavailable in the market today, such as reading email messages and marking them unread, or turning on the flashlight function.
We’ll have to wait a few months to determine whether BlackBerry’s assistant offering will truly “walk the talk” next to its peers. But in the meantime, it's interesting to consider BlackBerry’s naming approach.Continue reading...
games people play
Posted by Ben Berkon on July 3, 2013 05:15 PM
In June, the Electronic Entertainment Expo (otherwise known as E3) exhibited the latest and greatest from video game console giants like Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft. Even though Microsoft's Xbox 360 outsold Sony's PlayStation 3 and Nintendo's Wii U in the month of May, serious gamers were only concerned about the newest consoles to hit the market: the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
But while E3 was brimming with fans eager to hear why Microsoft decided to focus on the non-gaming, and internet and social connectivity features of the Xbox One, as well as how PlayStation 4 will offer free games and even support developers creating lower-priced console games, perhaps the greatest majority of new gamers were not present at the event.
The new generation of casual gamers are people who enjoy the likes of Words With Friends, Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja, and other simple downloadable games for mobile devices like iPhone and Android smartphones, most of which are free or cost under $2. Considering the PS4 and Xbox One consoles will retail for around $399 and $499, respectively—with games costing another $59.99 each—it's not terribly surprising that video game hardware and software sales have been down around 10 percent since May 2012.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 22, 2013 09:17 AM
ESPN begins hundreds of layoffs.
H&M says that some clothes were produced in collapsed factory in Cambodia.
Target misses earnings expectations and cuts outlook.
Cable networks are rebranding, and pay-TV brands aren't happy about it.
Dairy Queen to debut new ad campaign that promotes its burgers and fries.
Dodge enjoys star turn for its Challenger at premiere of Fast and Furious 6.
EA lawsuit over players' videogame-likeness issue threatens NCAA policies.
Facebook becoming less popular among teens, Pew study finds.
Ferrero backs off attack on World Nutella Day.
Fisker Automotive reportedly sees bid by boutique firm led by former GM exec Bob Lutz and Chinese supplier.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on January 7, 2013 07:02 AM
Hostess is in talks to sell off bread brands, as makers of Thomas' English muffins and Tastykake snacks emerge as two of the bidders for Wonder Bread according to the Wall Street Journal.
Hulu CEO resigns as web TV startup faces impasse.
NHL resolves labor dispute, faces shortened season.
Apple envy one of Fast Company's suggested New Year's Resolutions for brands.
Bank of America settles with Fannie Mae for $10 billion.
BMW is paring back car discounts in Germany.
CES lures brands and marketers to Las Vegas.Continue reading...
games people play
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 9, 2012 02:27 PM
"Halo 4" launched globally this week, becoming the biggest launch in the history of the franchise, selling 3.1 million units on its "opening day." The release even surpassed The Avengers, and expected to break all previous day-one entertainment sales records for the year.
Hundreds of thousands of fans lined up at 10,000 stores in more than 40 countries to be among the first players, with movie-style "premiere" events held in Seattle, Paris, London, Berlin, Tokyo, Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai and Sydney. They featured private screenings of the live-action digital series “Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn,” photo opps with the Master Chief, and meet-and-greets with the game’s creators, Microsoft Studios’ 343 Industries, the internal Microsoft group tasked with maintaining the Xbox exclusive franchise.
“‘Halo 4’ marks a rebirth and a new beginning for one of the most beloved and iconic franchises in the modern history of entertainment,” stated Phil Spencer, corporate VP of Microsoft Studios. “Over the past decade, the ‘Halo’ franchise has become a bona fide pop culture phenomenon, and ‘Halo 4’ promises to take the franchise to a new level and set the stage for the next decade of ‘Halo.’”
For those non-gamers, the “Halo” franchise began with “Halo: Combat Evolved” in 2001 and the record-breaking, critically acclaimed franchise has sold more than 46 million copies, grossed $3 billion worldwide, and driven more than 5 billion hours of gameplay by people connected to Xbox LIVE. Even American Express partnered with Xbox to tap into gamers.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on February 22, 2012 11:14 AM
Tesco, the UK-based mega-retailer, is making headlines for actions that relate to its corporate citizenship stance.
For a start, the brand has decided to ditch its participation in an "eco-labeling" scheme which was aimed to calculate the carbon footprint of each product slapped with a "carbon-reduction" label provided by Carbon Trust. Despite disappointing eco-activists, Tesco said that it was too expensive and time-consuming to analyze each product's purported impact on carbon-dioxide emissions and was disappointed that other retailers hadn't followed its pioneering role in the program, which started in 2006 when the brand promised to start a "revolution in green consumption" and become carbon-neutral by 2050.
Not to be discouraged from do-gooding, Tesco has set up a not-for-profit organization to raise money for women's health charities in the UK that will be funded by sales of its new feminine-care line of products under its Halo private label. The "venture brand's" cheeky marketing campaign includes the tagline, "Halo protects women. No ifs. No butts." The campaign website includes a cheeky (pun intended) invitation to women to "show us your knickers." Feminists, start your (blog) engines!
It's also been in the news for its efforts to help get Britain's legions of unemployed youth working, with one online job posting leading to a firestorm in the British press.Continue reading...
Posted by Caroline Smith on December 13, 2010 04:00 PM
During 2010, over 700 billion YouTube videos were watched and more than 13 million hours of video uploaded. Frankly, it’s amazing any work got done at all.
The search trends on the site, the world's second biggest search engine after parent Google, provide an accurate barometer on the serious (and perhaps less serious) news events of the year — and people's propensity for lower case searches. The top search terms on YouTube this year: Haiti, luge, eclipse trailer, ipad, eminem not afraid, shakira waka waka, double rainbow, bed intruder, halo reach, whip my hair and firework.
In other words, it was a good year for brands. Read: Old Spice (Man), the Winter Olympic Games, FIFA World Cup, Apple, Katy Perry, Microsoft Xbox and vampires.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on September 20, 2010 06:30 PM
BHP fails to win key political backing for Potash bid.
CNN and Eliot Spitzer prepare Oct. 4 debut of talkshow featuring the former NY state governor.
GMAC halts some evictions and sales of foreclosed homes as it corrects "a potential issue" in its foreclosure process.
Google, TiVo and Microsoft are racing to build an ad business for Web-connected TV spots.
HP and former CEO Mark Hurd settle lawsuit over his hiring by Oracle.Continue reading...