Hashtag Trending: World’s first AI news anchor; Apple, Amazon deal; reversible headphones

The world gets its first artificial intelligence news anchor, Apple strikes deal with Amazon to sell products, and you may never have to worry about putting your headphones over the wrong ear ever again.
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First up: Have you ever wondered if I’m a real person, maybe I’m actually a robot…you have no way of knowing. I’m sure that question has never crossed your mind but now it might, because I’m here to tell you AI news anchors are a real thing. People are talking about the AI news anchors announced by China’s state news agency Xinhua on Friday. In the videos the AI anchors look pretty seamless, almost as if it truly is a real person, just sitting in front of a bad backdrop, but speaking makes it a bit more obvious. This makes me feel a bit better, hopefully it means I’ll still have a job at least for a little while.

Next up from LinkedIn: Two tech giants have made a deal, Amazon has agreed to start selling more Apple products directly from the company. Apple products are of course already available on Amazon but only through third-party retailers. But now Apple will sell directly on Amazon. This means Apple products will be available at standard pricing. The available products include the new iPad Pro, Apple Watch and iPhone XR and XS. However competitive items like the Apple Homepod are not allowed because of Amazon’s Alexa. Some suggest that this agreement is a thawing of a sometimes tense relationship between the two tech giants. Apple products will start rolling out on Amazon in the next few weeks in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Japan and India. Looks like here in Canada we might have to wait for a future launch…big surprise.

Finally from Google Trends: Have you ever felt confused or frustrated by putting your headphones on and finding out it was for the wrong side, left versus right ear? Well, though I can’t say I feel your pain, Apple might be more understanding. The company has been approved for a patent which outlines plans for a reversible pair of headphones, meaning it doesn’t matter what way you put your headphones on. They would change left and right ears automatically. The headphones will have a grouping of five microphones in each ear and once placed on the user’s head they would compare inputs to determine what side is which, then automatically adjust how sound is distributed, making sure the sound is in the correct ear.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Meagan Simpson
Meagan Simpson
Meagan Simpson is a Jr. Staff Writer for IT World Canada. A graduate of Carleton University’s journalism program, she loves sports, travelling, reading and photography, and when not covering tech news she can be found cuddled up on the couch with her cat and a good book.

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