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Today's Tech: Samsung Galaxy S4 could maintain plastic design, Siri trumped by virtual assistant Nina, Evernote hack is explored

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, 06 Mar 2013News
Today's Tech: Samsung Galaxy S4 could maintain plastic design, Siri trumped by virtual assistant Nina, Evernote hack is explored

With the Samsung Galaxy S4 launch creeping closer and closer, we now have as clear a picture of the forthcoming device as we're likely to get before it is actually revealed on 14 March in New York City. However, amidst all the chatter surrounding eye-tracking technology and 8-core processors, the rumour-mongers seem to have paid little attention to the Galaxy S4's design - until now.

The latest reports indicate that the Samsung Galaxy S4 will resist the current trend for aluminium smartphone construction, opting instead to stick with the kind of lightweight plastic casing featured on the Galaxy S3, according to one of the company's senior executives. The news may disappoint potential buyers hoping that Samsung would go a more premium material route, but could the calculated risk pay-off for the Korean firm? Follow the link for more on how the Samsung Galaxy S4 will stack up against the likes of the Apple iPhone 5 and HTC One from a construction standpoint.

Apple's Siri may be the world's best-known virtual assistant, but customer service focused Nina has beat her to debuting on the web. Nuance Communications, the company behind Nina, has announced that the app is now available as a web-based service. While Nina won't be able to communicate commands to your computer, she does support text-to-speech output, so she can speak answers to customers, the text-based virtual assistant simply presents a human-like virtual agent with which users can interact via text-chat. Moreover, Nuance considers itself well-positioned to add two-way spoken interactions on the web in the future, allowing for actual verbal discussions with the virtual assistant. Follow the link to find out more about what Nina Web can do.

The HTC One may be even more crucial to the Taiwanese manufacturer's efforts to break into the mobile big time than previously thought, after the company reported that revenue dropped to a three-year low in February 2012. HTC raked in ‘just’ £250 million last month, which may not sound too miserly but actually represents a 44 per cent year-on-year drop on the £450m accrued in February 2012. Following the disappointing February return, HTC is now predicting that its Q1 2013 revenue could slip by more than 15 per cent, to just £1.1bn in total. The firm will need that HTC One to fly off the shelves when it finally arrives on 15 March.

Heading further into the professional half of ITProPortal, and today we examined what lessons need to be learned from the high-profile Evernote hack that took place this weekend. The note-storing web service had to order its 50 million-plus users to reset their passwords immediately after the breach, so we investigated what the company, and organisations in general, need to do to better secure their data. Follow the link for the full analysis.

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