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Google Assistant Can Now Connect to Over 5,000 Devices

Google recently announced support for IKEA lights and Deutsche Telekom's Magenta hub which enables dozens of devices to be controlled by Google Assistant.

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The Google Assistant can now connect with more than 5,000 devices for your home -- up from 1,500 this January, Google has announced.
Google Voice Assistant. Pixabay

The Google Assistant can now connect with more than 5,000 devices for your home — up from 1,500 this January, Google has announced.

Google Assistant is now powered with over one million “Actions” to connect with home devices.

“That includes cameras, dishwashers, doorbells, dryers, lights, plugs, thermostats, security systems, switches, vacuums, washers, fans, locks, sensors, heaters, AC units, air purifiers, refrigerators, ovens, we can keep on going!” Michele Turner, Director, Smart Home Ecosystem at Google, wrote in a blog post on Thursday.

Google Assistant is now powered with over one million "Actions" to connect with home devices.
Google on a smartphone device, Pixabay

Google is also adding more popular security alarm brands that will now work with Google Assistant, including ADT, First Alert, and Vivint Smart Home, smart door locks from August and Schlage and home security cameras from Panasonic.

Google recently announced support for IKEA lights and Deutsche Telekom’s Magenta hub which enables dozens of devices to be controlled by Google Assistant.

“Our partners are continuing to add even more devices that work with the Google Assistant across the home in the coming months, including ADT lights and thermostat, Xiaomi lights and new LG appliances, which include everything from air purifiers to TVs,” the post said.

To make Google Assistant better, the company has announced a new investment programme for early-stage startups to build an enhanced digital assistant ecosystem.

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The new initiative will include investment capital from Google to provide additional financial resources for the development, hiring and management of these startups.

Powered by Google Assistant, “Home” and “Home Mini” are priced at Rs 9,999 and Rs 4,499, respectively, and will be integrated with Hindi language support by the end of this year. (IANS)

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Many Security Flaws in Apple Safari Browser: Google

Google discovers security flaws in Apple Safari browser

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Google
Google security researchers discovered several security flaws in a privacy software in Apple web browser Safari. Pixabay

Google security researchers discovered several security flaws in a privacy software in Apple web browser Safari that could have helped third-party vendors track users’ browsing habits.

According to a report in the Financial Times which cited a soon-to-be published paper from Google’s ‘Project Zero’ team, the vulnerabilities were found in an anti-tracking feature known as ‘Intelligent Tracking Prevention’.

Once disclosed by Google researchers to Apple in August last year, the Cupertino-based iPhone maker immediately patched the flaws.

Apple launched the ‘Intelligent Tracking Prevention’ tool in 2017 to, in fact, protect Safari users from being tracked around the web by advertisers and other third-party cookies.

According to Google researchers, the vulnerabilities left personal data of Safari users exposed. They also found a flaw that allowed hackers to “create a persistent fingerprint that will follow the user around the web”.

Google
This is the third time Google researchers have found flaws in the Apple ecosystem. Pixabay

Apple confirmed it patched the issues.

This is the third time Google researchers have found flaws in the Apple ecosystem.

In September, Apple slammed Google for creating a false impression about its iPhones being at hacking risk owing to security flaws that allegedly let several malicious websites break into its iOS operating system.

Researchers at ‘Project Zero’ team had discovered several hacked websites that allegedly used security flaws in iPhones to attack users who visited these websites — compromising their personal files, messages, and real-time location data.

In a statement, Apple said the so-called sophisticated attack was narrowly focused, not a broad-based exploit of iPhones “en masse” as described.

According to Google, the websites delivered their malware indiscriminately and were operational for years.

Apple said that it fixed the vulnerabilities in question — working extremely quickly to resolve the issue just 10 days after it learnt about it.

In July last year, the ‘Project Zero’ team found six critical flaws in Apple iMessage that can compromise the user’s phone without even interacting with them. These security vulnerabilities fell into the ‘interactionless’ category.

Also Read- Snake is the Most Probable Wildlife Animal Reservoir of Novel Coronavirus: Study

Two members of ‘Project Zero’, Google’s elite bug-hunting team, published details and demo proof-of-concept code for five of six ‘interactionless’ security bugs that impact the iOS operating system and can be exploited via the iMessage client. All the six security bugs were patched with the iPhone maker’s iOS 12.4 release. (IANS)