Today’s topics include AT&T’s first business customer trial of 5G wireless technology, the U.S. Supreme Court’s reduction of the restitution it required Samsung to pay Apple, Microsoft’s second attempt at social AI chatbots and Google’s launch of its Trusted Contacts mobile application.
Fifth Generation or 5G technology is a way off from broad deployment, but AT&T is laying claim to what it believes is the first U.S. business customer trial in Austin, Texas.
In collaboration with Ericsson and Intel, the carrier announced on Dec. 5 its first public 5G demonstration featuring streaming 4K HD video, real-time camera feeds and speeds of almost 14 gigabytes per second.
The demonstration of millimeter wave (mmWave) technology to power a 5G network experience in one of Intel’s Austin offices. AT&T said the trial is important because it takes the technology out of the lab and into the field to see how it can serve real-world business customers.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Dec. 6 that Samsung does not have to give up $399 million in profits for copying aspects of Apple’s iPhone in the design of its Android phones.
The court maintained that the South Korean IT products giant does not have to return all the profits earned from its phones that were found to infringe upon Apple’s copyrighted design of the iPhone.
Thus it is not liable for at least $399 million of the $930 million patent-infringement award Apple wants as restitution. As a result, Apple may be able to recover damages from Samsung based on the profits the South Korean company earned only from the features that were infringed upon–not the entire smartphone.
This indicates Samsung may still be liable for the remaining $531 million the plaintiff is asking the court to mandate. The case will return to federal court to reconsider Samsung liability based on the Supreme Court’s decision.
Microsoft is giving social chatbots another try several months after the company was forced to pull the plug on an earlier effort called Tay.
Like Tay, Microsoft’s new chatbot named Zo is powered by the company’s artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning technologies to deliver conversational experiences.
Unlike Tay, Microsoft appears to be taking a more cautious approach to launching this chatbot. Whereas Tay was set loose on Twitter, Snapchat, GroupMe and Kik in the U.S., Zo is currently only available on Kik, a bot-friendly chat platform.
Google has rolled out a new tracking app that for once is not all about delivering targeted web advertisements to people.
Rather, the company’s new ‘Trusted Contacts’ is a personal safety application that lets users share their location information with loved ones so they can be quickly located in an emergency. The app works even when it is offline.
It’s currently available to Android users who can download it from Google Play Store. Google will release an iOS version of the app as well, but has not said when it plans to do so.
People who download the application can assign “trusted” status to individuals they wish to share location information with, such as family and close friends.