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April 23, 2013 | By Robin Abcarian
If you think your smartphone's fancy voice recognition software lets you text safely while you are driving, think again. A new study by Texas A&M University's Transportation Research Institute suggests that far from making drivers safer, the practice takes longer than manually texting and does nothing to reduce distracted driving. The study was reported in PC magazine: “Texting,” concluded the study's author, Christina Yager, “is not an activity that should be coupled with driving.” Yet who among us - meaning, me - has not texted while behind the wheel, all the while promising to stop ... right after I send just one more text?
April 19, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Siri isn't just a pretty voice with the answers. It's also been recording and keeping all the questions users ask. Exactly what the voice assistant does with the data isn't clear, but Apple confirmed that it keeps users' questions for up to two years. Siri, which needs to be connected to the Internet to function, sends all of its users' queries to Apple. Apple revealed the information after Wired posted an article this week raising the question and highlighting the fact that the privacy statement for Siri wasn't very clear about how long that information is kept or what would be done with it. Technically Apple keeps Siri user data for six months, associating that data with the user.
March 17, 2013 | By Jen Leo
Is it an app or a live travel agent? Desti is from the makers of Siri, and hot from South by Southwest Interactive in Austin, Texas. Name: Desti Available for: iPad What it does: Provides answers to questions you'd ask a travel agent, such as suggestions for kid-friendly restaurants near your hotel or girlfriend getaway ideas at five-star hotels with spas in San Francisco. Cost: Free What's hot: Desti's tips go well beyond hotels and restaurants.
January 28, 2013 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Apple is updating iOS 6 for the iPhone, the iPad and the iPod Touch with a handful of useful features including allowing high-speed LTE connectivity with more carriers. The Cupertino, Calif., company released the iOS 6.1 update Monday morning. Users can access the update on their devices by going to the Settings app, tapping General and selecting Software Update. The software update is particularly useful for owners of devices that don't have 4G LTE connectivity. It'll allow the iPhone 5, the third and fourth-generation iPad and the iPad mini to have the high-speed data connection with more carriers.
January 28, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Mobile movie ticket sales could get a big assist from Apple's Siri. At least that's the view among executives at Fandango, the online ticket service owned by NBCUniversal that announced Monday that the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system will allow consumers to purchase movie tickets through Siri voice assistant. "Fandango is committed to innovating across all platforms and helping shape the future of moviegoing,”  Paul Yanover, president of Fandango, said in a statement.
December 22, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Google Maps recently made its long awaited return to the iPhone, and although it's received positive reviews, finding some of the apps' coolest features can be a bit difficult. That's why earlier this week, Google released a tip sheet explaining features of the new app. Here are several of those tips, along with a few others that should help you get well acclimated with Google Maps. Use Google Maps with Siri Typically when you ask Siri for directions, she'll give them to you but will use Apple Maps.
December 3, 2012 | By Paul Whitefield
It's the news that launched a thousand headlines Monday across the pond: the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting!  Thank goodness -- the British monarchy will endure. A future king or queen (as The Times reported, “The royal act of succession was changed last October to admit the eldest child whether son or daughter, rather than the eldest son to inherit the throne”) is on the way. Heck, they're so modern now, the news was announced on Buckingham Palace's website.
November 30, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
The Apple empire has extended to the baby crib. A new baby name report released this week by BabyCenter, a pregnancy and parenting information website, shows more parents named their children after Apple-related products in 2012. The name "Apple" was used for at least six girls in 2012, twice as many as in 2011. "Mac," meanwhile, was used for at least 49 boys, up from 25 a year ago. And at least 17 girls were named "Siri" this year, up from 11 last year. "The smart phone may just be the best parenting tool since diapers, and some moms and dads are paying homage to industry leader Apple in their choice of baby names," the baby name report says.  The names are calculated based on the 450,000 babies born in 2012 to moms registered with BabyCenter.
November 19, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
Apple's next Mac operating system will look even more like its iPhones and iPads by integrating Siri and Apple Maps, according to a report. Nine to 5 Mac 's Mark Gurman reports that his sources say an early test version of the Mac OS X 10.9 operating system includes Siri, Apple's voice assistant feature. Sources tell Gurman that the feature runs similarly to how it does on the iPad. If Siri is integrated into the next Mac operating system, however, there is a chance Apple may not support the feature in its older generation of computers, the report speculates.
November 6, 2012 | By Salvador Rodriguez
The next update to Apple's mobile operating system may include a way to buy movie tickets by just talking to Siri. The website 9 to 5 Mac is reporting that users will be able to ask Siri to purchase movie tickets in iOS 6.1, according to  developers who already have access to the upcoming update. Users can say phrases such as "Three tickets to see 'Brave,' " "Buy four tickets to see 'Toy Story 3' tonight in San Jose," or even "Two tickets to that new Pixar movie," according to a screen shot of Siri's information menu by 9 to 5 Mac. The new Siri feature works through Fandango.
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