Apple has updated an earlier lawsuit filed against Samsung with claims that the Galaxy S4 and its Google Now feature violate two Apple patents covering functions of its own virtual personal assistant, Siri. Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents relayed news of the updated complaint on Wednesday, and he noted that two of the patents — U.S. Patent 8,086,604, and U.S. Patent 6,846,959 — cover technologies related to Siri. Both filings describe a “universal interface for retrieval of information in a computer system.” Apple also added three more patents to its earlier complaint that are not related to Siri, according to the report.
With the first round of announcements behind us, the only thing that’s clear in the inevitable and perpetual Xbox One vs. PlayStation 4 battle is that there is no clear winner. Microsoft finally unveiled its next-generation video game console on Tuesday and once all the dust settled, Anandtech’s Anand Lal Shimpi took a step back and laid out everything we know about these two beastly consoles. Lal Shimpi’s analysis is extensive and thorough, as always, but it boils down to this: Based on what we know at this point, Sony has the edge in terms of specs and raw power. More →
Sony might not have revealed its console hardware during the PlayStation 4 unveiling, but at least we walked away with a pretty good idea of how buying and selling games would work. Microsoft finally took the wraps off of its next-generation Xbox One video game console on Tuesday and many people were left with more questions than answers. The gameplay demos we saw during the presentation looked fantastic, but how exactly does buying and reselling those wonderful new games work? More →
When it comes to U.S. carriers, just about everyone dreads the thought of having to call customer service to resolve an issue. Some carriers are certainly worse than others, of course, and the annual American Customer Satisfaction Index survey found that Verizon Wireless once again was ranked highest in customer service quality by subscribers. The company scored 73 points out of a possible 100, up 3 points from 2012. Sprint was flat in the No.2 spot with 71 points while AT&T gained a point to hit 70. T-Mobile remained the lowest-ranked major carrier as its score slid to 68 in 2013 from 69 last year. The full press release follows below. More →
As Pandora struggles to fight off a new wave of competition from the likes of industry giants like Google and Apple, the company recently announced a new feature that could definitely boost interest in its services. Dubbed “Pandora Premieres,” the new feature allows users to stream new albums in their entirety a week before they are released to the public. Upcoming albums can be streamed on-demand from start to finish for one week until they are released, and then they will be mixed in with Pandora’s standard streaming radio offering. Pandora Premieres is available to Pandora subscribers at pandora.com/premieres, and the company’s full press release follows below. More →
BGR took an in-depth look at Leap Motion’s revolutionary motion-control PC accessory last year, and we loved the accuracy and shocking reliability of Leap’s technology. The controller was only compatible with Mac computers at the time, however. In a recent post on the company’s blog, Leap showed off its upcoming Windows 7 and Windows 8 integration, which it plans to launch on July 22nd. An accompanying video shows how well Leap’s controller works with Windows for swiping, scrolling, zooming in and out, flipping through photos, drawing and more. It’s not quite Minority Report, but we’re getting there. Leap Motion’s full video follows below. More →
IBM spoke of shrinking its intelligent supercomputer Watson down to smartphone size last summer, and now it appears that the company is getting close to achieving that goal. Watson, which gained notoriety by famously trouncing two champions on Jeopardy, will not initially come to smartphones as a stand-alone app like Siri or Google Now, though it could eventually give both services a run for their money. Instead, IBM will partner with a number of companies including ANZ Bank, Nielsen, Celcom, IHS, and Royal Bank of Canada, Forbes reports to have Watson power customer service systems for these companies. Watson will initially be accessible though Web chats, email, smartphone apps and SMS, and voice recognition functionality is expected to come in future versions of the offering. Apps that include this new “Ask Watson” feature are expected to begin rolling out in the next few months.
Bad news, Xbox fans: Your current collection of Xbox 360 games will not work on Microsoft’s new Xbox One, and the company’s used games policy is very unclear. The company finally took the wraps off its next-generation video game console on Tuesday and while there was plenty of good news to be had, there were also some some troubling announcements. More →
As rumors of Apple readying fingerprint scanning technology for a future iPhone continue to swirl, a new report suggests another company is working on similar tech for future versions of its smartphones: Samsung. SamMobile reports that files uncovered in a leaked firmware build for Samsung’s Galaxy S III included a number of images of fingerprints and other related items. The presence of these graphics suggests Samsung is indeed testing some type of fingerprint scanning technology internally, but they give no indication of exactly what kind of functionality Samsung might have planned. The leaked images pulled from Samsung’s firmware file follow below. More →
After years of leaks, rumors and speculation, Microsoft’s next-generation Xbox will finally be unveiled on Tuesday during a press conference in Redmond, Washington. Recent reports suggest that the new “Xbox 720,” “Xbox Infinity” or whatever else it might be called will feature vastly improved specs such as an eight-core processor, 8GB of RAM, an 800MHz graphics processor, a 50GB 6x Blu-ray drive, gigabit ethernet connectivity and enhanced TV features. The new console may also require an always-on Internet connection to play games, though reports on that front have conflicted. We’ll know all there is to know shortly, however, and here’s how to watch all the action live from your computer, Xbox or smartphone: More →
“Mobile is eating the world,” according to industry analyst Benedict Evans. Ahead of a presentation to be given later this month at Book Expo America, Enders Analysis’ Benedict Evans published a draft of his slide deck. The presentation paints a wonderfully clear picture of where industry growth has come from over the past few years thanks to companies like Apple and Samsung, and where it will likely continue to come from over the next few years. In a word: mobile. Several charts in the deck to a good job of illustrating the mobile explosion, which ramped up in 2010 as PC industry growth started to flatline. A few particularly interesting slides follow below, and Evans’s full presentation can be viewed on his blog. More →
A teenager from Saratoga, California took home one of the top prizes at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair late last week after showing off her invention, which can fully charge a cell phone in 30 seconds or less. Eesha Khare was given the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award and a $50,000 prize for being runner-up in the competition, which was won by a 19-year-old who unveiled a new spin on self-driving car technology. Khare’s battery technology requires a new component to be installed inside the phone battery itself, and Intel notes that it also has potential applications for car batteries.
After being revealed on camera for the first time on Monday in a series of leaked photos, Samsung’s unannounced Galaxy S4 Active has leaked once again. This time the upcoming smartphone has been given a quick preview in a video published by a MobileTechReview forum user. The S4 Active is a ruggedized version of Samsung’s popular Galaxy S4, featuring shock-proofing, dust-proofing and slightly less impressive specs; it looks like the phone will forego the global S4′s eight-core processor and will also include an 8-megapixel camera instead of the original model’s 13-megapixel unit. The video of Samsung’s Galaxy S4 Active follows below. More →