SRAX Recap: Google apps help hearing-impaired, Facebook offers delete option for messages, AI applied to flower sales

In this week’s digital news, Google improves communication for hearing-impaired users, Facebook issues a 10 minute period to unsend messages, a look into how artificial intelligence will boost sales this Valentines Day, and more.  

Google launches new apps to help hearing-impaired users communicate

To address the needs of the differently-abled, Google has released two new apps that will help improve communication for hearing-impaired Android owners. The first app, “Live Transcribe,” uses a machine learning algorithm to translate real sentences into captions. The second app, “Sound Amplifier,” uses the smartphone’s built-in microphone to amplify any noises in the surrounding area. The two apps were created to work as a dynamic duo in order to give hearing-impaired users a better way to communicate clearly with each other. While the apps are only available for Android users, hopefully iPhone users will have access to these apps soon once rave reviews start coming in.

Via Pexels

Facebook now lets everyone unsend messages for 10 minutes

Regretting that last message you sent? Well, now you can finally breathe. After Zuckerberg was reportedly caught removing a few of his own messages to recipients inboxes, he recovered from the backlash by promising the public a similar function. This week he made good on his word and released a ‘Remove for everyone’ option on Facebook Messenger. The new feature grants users a ten minute grace period to edit or unsend messages. However, recipients will still receive an alert that a message was removed from their inbox, in case they feel the need to report anything suspicious or inappropriate. Nevertheless, Facebook believes this new feature will improve honest and possibly even flirty conversation between users.

What artificial intelligence means for 1-800-Flowers this Valentine’s Day

This week, the Chief marketing operator of 1-800-Flowers, Amit Shah, revealed how the popular floral business will increase sales this Valentine’s Day. Believe it or not, it all comes down to using AI to improve their chatbot customer service system. Shah explains that traditionally speaking, customer service representatives are trained professionals who sympathize and assist customers over the phone. This quality was what their chatbot system needed to adopt as well and the goal could be accomplished using artificial intelligence. Now that chatbots are a great tool in customer service, the company is training them to learn empathy in order to better assist customers. However, Shah made it perfectly clear that the company’s intent is to “compliment, rather than replace humans.”

Via Pexel

Apple planning its own 5G modems — but is it too late?

Calling modem technology important in today’s tech world would be an understatement. New reports suggest that Apple has a 5G version in the works. As Reuters reported this week, Apple’s processor chief Johny Srouji began leading an in-house modem development team last month. The company has been the leading modem creator throughout the years with their 2G, 3G, and 4G developments. However, once they took a different route and created XS, an extended 4G modem, they may have lost their foothold in the market.

It goes without saying that Android and other competitors are way ahead of the game in terms of development. So, is Apple too late to join the competition? That’s the question of the hour. It could be argued that the company will undoubtedly be able to play catch up, especially considering Apple’s past sales. Apple reportedly sells around 200 million iPhones each year, which says a whole lot. It seems that one of the main issues, however, is a dispute with Qualcomm, one of the company’s main manufacturers. So while Intel is racing to get a viable 5G modem finished in time for 2020, Apple is currently finding a different supplier.

Instagram advertisers stay loyal by spending more

Instagram stories, and their doppelgänger Facebook Stories, have quickly become the most explosive form of advertising on social media. These dynamic results, however, come at a cost. A new report from Kenshoo shows that advertising companies are spending more money than ever to keep revenue numbers rising. The company saw a 120 percent increase in ad spend year-over-year during the fourth quarter of 2018. As well, it was up 43 percent over third-quarter results. On top of that, Instagram advertisers were the driving force behind Instagram’s overall growth in 2018.

Chris Costello, the senior director of Kenshoo, claims that these advertisers have been around, but now they’re upping spending. “They’ve been there all along. Instagram advertisers are increasing spend incrementally as they begin to boost the value of existing programs by reaching target audiences.”

Published on February 8, 2019

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