Connect with us

Featured

CES: Now AI will let pets take selfies

Published

on

In what may well be the most absurd new product launched at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, pets are going smart…

At the Digital Experience event and Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Petcube is demoing its pet detection technology, which uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to recognize pets, trigger recording of pet selfie videos, and initiate two-way video calls. The feature update will be rolled out to compatible Petcube Play and Petcube Bites devices on the latest firmware starting this spring.

With this exciting new upgrade, pets can phone their parents, send cute selfie videos, and make clips instantly shareable. Through machine learning, Petcube devices will be able to differentiate between pets versus humans.

Pets can initiate two-way livestream chats whenever they’re captured in front of the wide-angle camera. When a pet comes into view, the video recording is triggered by the Petcube camera. The clip is then pushed over-the-air as an App notification to the device owner. Owners will be able to preview the selfie clip and accept the video call request from their pet. They can choose to save the clip to their phone’s camera roll, or view it later via the Petcube App timeline.

“As connected pet gadgets and voice-enabled products are taking off, we’re excited to lead the way in connecting pets to the Internet and enabling pet-human remote communications.” said Yaroslav Azhnyuk, CEO and co-founder of Petcube. “By 2022, we estimate 40 million pet households will use a connected pet device. Petcube should be in every pet parent’s home.”

The pet selfies will be temporarily auto-saved to the cloud, or saved up to 3 to 30 days based on an optional Petcube Care plan. Petcube device users can also instantly share clips via the Petcube App feed and to their preferred social networks.

This past year, Petcube integrated Facebook live and updated Petcube devices to be compatible with Amazon Alexa and Amazon Dash Replenishment Service. The company continues to drive innovation in the pet care space and plans to roll out advancements in pet behavioral diagnostics later this year, helping pet parents take proactive actions when it comes to their pet’s health and wellness.

Featured

Millennials turning 40: NOW will you stop targeting them?

It’s one of the most overused terms in youth marketing, and probably the most inaccurate, writes ARTHUR GOLDSTUCK

Published

on

One of the most irritating buzzwords embraced by marketers in recent years is the term “millennial”. Most are clueless about its true meaning, and use it as a supposedly cool synonym for “young adults”. The flaw in this targeting – and the word “flaw” here is like calling the Grand Canyon a trench – is that it utterly ignores the meaning of the term. “Millennials” are formally defined as anyone born from 1980 to 2000, meaning they have typically come of age after the dawn of the millennium, or during the 21st century.

Think about that for a moment. Next year, the millennial will be formally defined as anyone aged from 20 to 40. So here you have an entire advertising, marketing and public relations industry hanging onto a cool definition, while in effect arguing that 40-year-olds are youths who want the same thing as newly-minted university graduates or job entrants.

When the communications industry discovers just how embarrassing its glib use of the term really is, it will no doubt pivot – millennial-speak for “changing your business model when it proves to be a disaster, but you still appear to be cool” – to the next big thing in generational theory.

That next big thing is currently Generation Z, or people born after the turn of the century. It’s very convenient to lump them all together and claim they have a different set of values and expectations to those who went before. Allegedly, they are engaged in a quest for experience, compared to millennials – the 19-year-olds and 39-olds alike – supposedly all on a quest for relevance.

In reality, all are part of Generation #, latching onto the latest hashtag trend that sweeps social media, desperate to go viral if they are producers of social content, desperate to have caught onto the trend before their peers.

The irony is that marketers’ quest for cutting edge target markets is, in reality, a hangover from the days when there was no such thing as generational theory, and marketing was all about clearly defined target markets. In the era of big data and mass personalization, that idea seems rather quaint.

Indeed, according to Grant Lapping, managing director of DataCore Media, it no longer matters who brands think their target market is.

“The reason for this is simple: with the technology and data digital marketers have access to today, we no longer need to limit our potential target audience to a set of personas or segments derived through customer research. While this type of customer segmentation was – and remains – important for engagements across traditional above-the-line engagements in mass media, digital marketing gives us the tools we need to target customers on a far more granular and personalised level.

“Where customer research gives us an indication of who the audience is, data can tell us exactly what they want and how they may behave.”

Netflix, he points out, is an example of a company that is changing its industry by avoiding audience segmentation, once the holy grail of entertainment.

In other words, it understands that 20-year-olds and 40-year-olds are very different – but so is everyone in between.

* Arthur Goldstuck is founder of World Wide Worx and editor-in-chief of Gadget.co.za. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram on @art2gee

Continue Reading

Featured

Robots coming to IFA

Published

on

Robotics is no longer about mechanical humanoids, but rather becoming an interface between man and machine. That is a key message being delivered at next month’s IFA consumer electronics expo in Berlin. An entire hall will be devoted to IFA Next, which will not only offer a look into the future, but also show what form it will take.

The concepts are as varied as the exhibitors themselves. However, there are similarities in the various products, some more human than others, in the fascinating ways in which they establish a link between fun, learning and programming. In many cases, they are aimed at children and young people.

The following will be among the exhibitors making Hall 26 a must-visit:

Leju Robotics (Stand 115) from China is featuring what we all imagine a robot to be. The bipedal Aelos 1s can walk, dance and play football. And in carrying out all these actions it responds to spoken commands. But it also challenges young researchers to apply their creativity in programming it and teaching it new actions. And conversely, it also imparts scholastic knowledge.

Cubroid (Stand 231, KIRIA) from Korea starts off by promoting an independent approach to the way it deals with tasks. Multi-functional cubes, glowing as they play music, or equipped with a tiny rotating motor, join together like Lego pieces. Configuration and programming are thus combined, providing a basic idea of what constitutes artificial intelligence.

Spain is represented by Ebotics (Stand 218). This company is presenting an entire portfolio of building components, including the “Mint” educational program. The modular system explains about modern construction, programming and the entire field of robotics.

Elematec Corporation (Stand 208) from Japan is presenting the two-armed SCARA, which is not intended to deal with any tasks, but in particular to assist people with their work.

Everybot (Stand 231, KIRIA) from Japan approaches the concept of robotics by introducing an autonomous floor-cleaning machine, similar to a robot vacuum cleaner.

And Segway (Stand 222) is using a number of products to explain the modern approach to battery-powered locomotion.

IFA will take place at the Berlin Exhibition Grounds (ExpoCenter City) from 6 to 11 September 2019. For more information, visit www.ifa-berlin.com

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2019 World Wide Worx