FCC makes AI-generated ‘robocalls’ illegal, Google Bard becomes Gemini


The federal agency that regulates communication in the US has made robocalls that use AI-generated voices illegal. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced the move on Thursday, saying it will take effect immediately. It gives the state power to prosecute any bad actors behind these calls, the FCC said. It comes amid a rise in robocalls that have mimicked the voices of celebrities and political candidates. “Bad actors are using AI-generated voices in unsolicited robocalls to extort vulnerable family members, imitate celebrities, and misinform voters,” said FCC chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel in a statement on Thursday. BBC 

Google has rebranded its Bard AI chatbot as Gemini as the tech giant announced a new mobile app and a more powerful AI tool, Gemini Advanced. From Thursday, a Gemini app will launch on Android for the first time, and the chatbot will be made available inside the official Google app on Apple’s iOS. In a major update to the firm’s AI offerings, the mobile app upgrades will launch alongside a new subscription-based service called Gemini Advanced. Independent 

For months, Tom has been left in limbo by Amazon. The money locked in his account has continued to climb – with hundreds of thousands of pounds left inaccessible. The tech giant has been criticised for withholding payments from its sellers as it conducts strict new VAT checks, required under UK laws. In the process, hundreds – if not thousands – of small businesses have suddenly been plunged into a cash flow crisis. Telegraph 

The Simpsons wrote head-sets in a 2016 episode. Credit: Simpsons/Disney

Everyone loves The Simpsons, how could you not? While it’s always been a popular show, for the past few years it’s become…well kinda creepy as the show seems to foreshadow the future with an eerie accuracy. It’s freaking us out at this point. In 2016, an episode titled ‘Friends and Family’ was aired, which almost gave a Black Mirror feel to the cartoon, showing Homer and Marge lying in bed while using virtual reality headsets, which soon catches on to the whole of Springfield. And many think that the tech has an uncanny resemblance to the new Apple Vision Pro. Unilad 

Uber has announced its first full-year profit after bookings rose by more than a fifth in the last three months of 2023. The American company’s revenue for the quarter rose by 15% in the three months to December 30, compared with the same period in 2022. Dara Khosrowshahi, the chief executive, said that 2023 marked a year of “sustainable, profitable growth for Uber” after the company benefited from a shift in consumer spending away from retail towards services. Sky News

Honor took its time in launching the Magic V2 globally, and as a result, the phone is running last year’s silicon and Android 13. It also misses out on an IP rating and wireless charging, and the software doesn’t have the same level of polish as its rivals. But all of these issues fade into the background once you actually start using the foldable. The Magic V2 is the thinnest foldable available today, and using it is transformative — it is fundamentally different to every other device I’ve used and it feels like a regular phone while still featuring a tablet-sized foldout display. Android Central 

The fake news anchor introduced unverified images that he claimed showed Palestinians injured and killed from Israeli military operations in Gaza. Photograph: Microsoft/Microsoft Threat Analysis Center

Iranian state-backed hackers interrupted TV streaming services in the United Arab Emirates to broadcast a deepfake newsreader delivering a report on the war in Gaza, according to analysts at Microsoft. The tech company said a hacking operation run by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards, a key branch of the Iranian armed forces, had disrupted streaming platforms in the UAE with an AI-generated news broadcast branded “For Humanity”. The Guardian 

Chris Price
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