Technology Google buys short-form audio startup to bolster its podcast efforts

14:01  12 october  2017
14:01  12 october  2017 Source:   Engadget

Google Home Mini bug could make it record audio 24/7

  Google Home Mini bug could make it record audio 24/7 Some of the Home Mini speakers Google gave away during its recent Pixel event aren't working correctly. Here's a video of his Home Mini recording every sound that comes out of his TV:

60Db, the short - form podcast app, looks like it ' s shutting down. The app's developer Tiny Garage Labs has joined Google , according to a post on Medium. In the past year though, the team worked with some 80 editorial partners to produce "hundreds of audio stories."

Google hasn't even started shipping the Home Mini yet, but its launch has been marred by an unusual situation where some of the devices would record and upload practically any sound. As a result, Google says it ' s taking the step of disabling all top touch functionality on the Home Mini.

  Google buys short-form audio startup to bolster its podcast efforts © Provided by Engadget

60Db, the short-form podcast app, looks like it's shutting down. The app's developer Tiny Garage Labs has joined Google, according to a post on Medium. Haven't heard of it? Well, then you probably won't miss it much come November 10th. In the past year though, the team worked with some 80 editorial partners to produce "hundreds of audio stories."

What they're up to next isn't clear. As Business Insider notes, Google Play Music already has a section for podcasts, so perhaps this is a move to help revamp a seemingly abandoned portion of the mostly abandoned app.

If you'll remember, Google Play Music only added podcast support last April when the service launched in 2013. Spotify, on the other hand, has steadily increased its push into the space, going so far as hiring former Maker Studios CEO Courtney Holt to lead its podcast division. Spotify also made a pact with WNYC earlier this year. So, yeah, while Google might be dominating the competition in terms of machine learning and mobile cameras, it still has some catching up to do when it comes to other aspects of its business.

Google Assistant gets a male voice option .
You can now make your Google Assistant a dude. Google just added an ambiguously named "Voice II" option under the Assistant Voice settings menu in the Google Assistant preferences (first spotted by Android Police). Selecting it gives you a huskier AI assistant across all your devices; be it the iOS app, a Pixel phone, or the Google Home speaker.Here, have a listen to Voice I and Voice II side-by-side:Often you'll hear people use the pronouns "her" or "she" to refer to their digital assistants even though the formless slab of consumer electronics they’re referencing is so obviously genderless.

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