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Google Bids Goodbye to Instant Messaging App ‘Allo’

"It's far from universal, but now that Google is focused on just a single messaging app, it has a better chance of gaining some momentum,"

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The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London, Britain. VOA

After pausing investments in its “Allo” mobile messaging app, Google has finally bid goodbye to the platform that was launched with much fanfare in 2016.

A banner across the official Allo website confirmed that March 12 was its last day in operation, The Verge reported on Monday.

“During our time together, we brought you a smarter way to chat, with features like the Google Assistant, ‘Allo’ for web and selfie stickers but now the app is signing off,” the banner on Allo’s page read.

Last year in April, Anil Sabharwal, the head of the communications group at Google told the media that “Allo” as a product did not achieve the level of traction the company had hoped for.

Even though the app’s successor is not quite ready yet, Google has incorporated some of Allo’s features like smart replies and desktop support into the Android Messaging app.

Google on an Android device. Pixabay

“We’re working to bring your favorite features to the Messages app so you can have richer conversations with all your friends. If you have an Android phone, we hope you’ll try Messages!” the banner said.

“Allo” was launched as an instant messaging mobile app for the Android and iOS mobile Operating Systems (OS), with a web client available on Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera browsers.

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After Allo’s exit, Google is going all in on Rich Communication Services (RCS) — the successor to SMS that’s been a long time coming — to give Android a successful messaging app.

“It’s far from universal, but now that Google is focused on just a single messaging app, it has a better chance of gaining some momentum,” The Verge said. (IANS)

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Here’s Why Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai Believes That Artificial Intelligence Needs To Be Regulated

Advanced AI which is beyond chat bots will soon be used to manipulate social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram

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The Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai stressed that "international alignment will be critical to making global standards work" on AI. Wikimedia Commons

Joining Microsoft President Brad Smith and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai on Monday called for new regulations for Artificial Intelligence (AI), saying the only question now is how to approach it.

Although new regulation is needed, “a cautious approach is required that might not see significant controls placed on AI,” Pichai who was last month took over as the CEO of Alphabet, Google’s parent company, in an editorial piece in The Financial Times.

“There is no question in my mind that artificial intelligence needs to be regulated. It is too important not to. The only question is how to approach it”.

“Companies such as ours cannot just build promising new technology and let market forces decide how it will be used. It is equally incumbent on us to make sure that technology is harnessed for good and available to everyone,” Pichai wrote.

According to CNET, the timing of the editorial coincides with a big push from Google to reveal some of the results of its own work in AI and bring tools it has developed out into the world.

The Alphabet CEO stressed that “international alignment will be critical to making global standards work” on AI.

Sundar
Joining Microsoft President Brad Smith and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai on Monday called for new regulations for Artificial Intelligence (AI), saying the only question now is how to approach it. Wikimedia Commons

We need to take a “principled approach to applying AI, said the company, while offering Google’s “expertise, experience and tools.”

“We need to be clear-eyed about what could go wrong,” he said.

His comments come as lawmakers and governments globally are considering to limit the use of AI in fields such as face recognition system – an issue close to Microsoft President Brad Smith’s heart who has often criticized the technology, urging governments to enact legislation regarding the technology.

“Unless we act, we risk waking up five years from now to find that facial recognition services have spread in ways that exacerbate societal issues,” said Smith.

Advanced AI which is beyond chat bots will soon be used to manipulate social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, Tesla CEO Elon Musk warned recently.

In his famous debate with former Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma, Musk entered into a lassic argument over the capabilities of emerging technologies like AI.

Sundar
Although new regulation is needed, “a cautious approach is required that might not see significant controls placed on AI,” Sundar Pichai who was last month took over as the CEO of Alphabet, Google’s parent company, in an editorial piece in The Financial Times. Pixabay

Musk said that computers will one day surpass humans in “every single way”. He has predicted that a single company that develops “God-like super intelligence” might achieve world domination.

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If not regulated or controlled soon, AI could become an “immortal dictator” and there will be no escape for humans, the SpaceX CEO had warned. (IANS)