After selling the Devices and Services division to Microsoft, Nokia is now trying to  build a great location platform out of HERE. Yesterday they announced that they have acquired Desti, an SRI international spin-off that uses artificial intelligence and natural language understanding to create deep knowledge of destinations by reading everything about them, and understands users’ natural language, so they can be specific and get the best results, immediately. Desti is the first travel planner that understands you and understands travel. Desti’s iPad app helps you find exactly what you’re looking for when planning a trip – by simply asking for it. Desti uses artificial intelligence to sift through thousands of places, find you the best matches – and explain the relevance. Want to check what’s near this hotel? Just ask! Need a pet friendly park? Just ask! No more spending hours sifting through irrelevant search results. Desti will even read ...

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Many years ago when Android started to become more popular and eat into the iPhone’s dominance, Apple made a decision to lessen their reliance on Google.  In what became a PR nightmare, Apple created their own mapping solution and stopped using Google Maps.  In addition on the backend, Siri is now powered by Bing.  This was done well over a year ago and an announcement was made at the time.  Up until now we have not had any numbers as to how many queries Bing receives from Siri users.   Qi Lu, the longtime head of Microsoft’s search and online services, shed some light on this in a recent interview with Recode: We haven’t heard a lot about search in a while. We’ve heard that Yahoo hasn’t been very happy with the partnership. Is it critical to Bing’s future to have that Yahoo partnership? We’re very happy with the Yahoo partnership. ...

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Yesterday, we saw a sudden burst of information about Microsoft’s next generation personal assistant codenamed ‘Cortana’. First, there was a report that Microsoft is planning to release it as part of Windows Phone 8.1 and it will take on Apple’s Siri. Later, there were some screenshots of the early prototype of Cortana running on a Windows Phone 8 device. The screenshots revealed that Cortana is more than a speech assistant, it takes lots of contextual data like location, wifi network, weather, calender appointments, etc to assist you. Cortana will be able to learn and adapt over time as it is relying on machine-learning technology and the “Satori” knowledge repository which now powers Bing. Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet reports that Cortana is not just a Windows Phone app, instead it is a shell that will span across Windows PCs, Tablets, Phones and Xbox. She reported the below to explain it. ...

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While copying Windows Phone, Apple decided it may as well switch to Bing too.  All kidding aside, Google is a powerful enemy and an ever increasing threat to Apple and Microsoft.  Since Windows Phone has less marketshare, Apple has decided to switch to Bing when iOS users use Siri. Today at WWDC Apple announced iOS 7, which brings Bing web search integration to Siri, Apple’s breakthrough personal assistant, for the first time.  Starting this fall with iOS 7, Bing will power Siri’s new integrated web search. When users ask Siri a question either the specific answer or web search links will now be delivered automatically so users can find information even faster. Bing.com will now be available to Siri users on iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. This deal between Apple and Microsoft is similar to the one with Yahoo.  The average user will not notice any front-end changes to Siri, but on the ...

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In a new Windows 8 ad, Microsoft pokes fun of the iPad via Siri. The gloves are clearly off and Microsoft is taking the fight right to Cupertino.  Interestingly enough Microsoft opted to use an ASUS tablet instead of their on Surface in this advertisement. This marks one of the first ads where Microsoft directly goes after the competition, showing feature to feature comparisons. Is this the beginning of a more aggressive Microsoft, at least in terms of marketing?   Did you like the ad? Let us know in the comments below. ...

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