Tech News March: AI, VR, Robotics, and More!

6 min readApr 8, 2024


Welcome back to the tech news rubric. This month’s tech news is bursting at the seams! We’ll explore the latest breakthroughs in AI, from helpful assistants to controversial chatbots.

We’ll delve into Apple’s VR headsets going international and smart glasses getting a serious upgrade. Plus, we’ll see how robotics are revolutionizing surgery and how Microsoft’s open-source tool is poised to speed up your apps. Buckle up and get ready for a whirlwind tour of tech’s hottest headlines!

Google Gemini is Available on Android Phones

First, we will talk about Google Gemini. A new generative AI model is set to redefine digital assistance on Android devices. All we know is that the name of the Bard chatbot was changed. An AI tool is currently available on Android phones, and Gemini may eventually replace Google Assistant. The discovery of Gemini in the beta version of the Google Search app suggests its integration into tablets, possibly replacing Google Assistant.

However, there are uncertainties regarding the simultaneous operation of both assistants on tablets. While screenshots indicate Gemini’s precedence over Google Assistant, practical tests show Google Assistant is invoked instead. This discrepancy highlights ongoing development and potential parallel operation until Gemini fully encompasses Google Assistant’s capabilities. Additionally, speculation suggests Pixel tablets may be the first to incorporate Gemini, possibly to differentiate Google’s tablets in the competitive Android market.

Grok a New Controversial AI Chatbot

Elon Musk is expanding the availability of the contentious Grok chatbot to more X customers to keep users on the platform. Grok was formerly limited to the costliest subscription tier but will soon be accessible to all paid levels.

X is seeing a decline in users and advertisers, and this decision is seen as an effort to entice people back with a unique and unusual incentive. Grok is a huge language model chatbot that has been trained using a vast dataset of text and code, including real-time text from X postings. Musk claims it outperforms OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

Grok has sparked controversy since it is reported to answer inquiries on themes other chatbots avoid, such as conspiracy theories. Some analysts feel this is an attempt to get consumers to subscribe to X.

US Government Commits to Take Safeguarding Measures with the Use of AI

The White House obligates the federal agencies to implement safeguards for AI usage by December 1, ensuring transparency, protection of rights, and safety. Measures include public disclosures of AI usage, sharing safety test results before public release, and promoting accountability in AI development. Notably, safeguards allow opt-out options for facial recognition in air travel and require human oversight in healthcare AI.

The government will also share AI inventories, metrics, and code if safe. Ongoing AI applications include hurricane damage assessment, disease spread prediction, and air traffic management. Additionally, the White House plans to hire 100 AI professionals and designate chief AI officers within agencies.

Have People Lost Their Jobs Due to AI?

And the last from the AI updates is about risks for people. The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) warns that up to eight million UK jobs could be lost to AI, with back office, entry-level, and part-time positions being the most vulnerable. Bhargav Srinivasa-Desikan of IPPR explains why certain roles are at risk and discusses a potential positive impact on the UK economy.

Apple International Launch of Apple Vision Pro VR Headset

Apple has announced the worldwide debut of the Apple Vision Pro VR headset. Tim Cook revealed at the China Development Forum in Beijing that the headset would be released in at least one more nation this year, notably China. While no precise release date or cost was announced, experts predict a larger rollout outside of the United States before June 2024, with China being only the beginning. Job advertisements for Vision Pro roles in numerous countries back up this claim. Other prospective release nations include the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and Japan.

Meta Smart Glasses Get AI Upgrade: Cool Tech or Social Faux Pas?

Meta’s upcoming AI update for Ray-Ban Smart Glasses aims to transform them into an always-on assistant, allowing wearers to interact with their frames for various queries.

Here are the key points:

  • New Feature: Meta AI lets you ask questions about your surroundings using voice commands. It can identify objects, animals, and landmarks you see.
  • Limited Availability: This update is in beta and only available for Ray-Ban Smart Glasses with the new AR1 Gen 1 chip.
  • Social Awkwardness: The biggest concern is how it looks to talk to your glasses in public. The authors found themselves whispering and getting strange looks.
  • Potential Benefits: Despite the social awkwardness, the reviewer acknowledges the convenience of having a hands-free assistant without needing a phone or smartwatch.
  • Future Improvements: Integrating a subtle AR display into the glasses could be a solution. This would provide visual information and reduce the need for extended conversations with Meta AI.

Meta’s Smart Glasses offer promising technology but raise concerns about how they might be perceived in social settings. The future of technology might depend on finding a balance between functionality and social acceptance.

Robotic Assistance Makes Knee Replacement Surgery Easier on Patients

Sunita, a 67-year-old from Mumbai, suffers from terrible knee pain caused by arthritis. Traditional therapies failed, prompting her to seek surgery despite worries about post-operative discomfort and recuperation. After consulting with Dr. Amyn Rajani, she realized that robotic partial knee replacement was a realistic alternative. Dr. Rajani advised this method since it is precise and less invasive.

Mako technology is used to produce individualized 3D models of the joint before surgery, allowing for more precise planning. During surgery, the robotic arm aids with bone cutting while maintaining accurate bounds. Sunita had the operation and was released within 24 hours, with little post-operative discomfort. Her example exemplifies the revolutionary power of robotic arm-assisted technology in joint surgery, providing promise for better results and a higher quality of life for arthritis sufferers.

Microsoft Releases Open-Source Tool (Garnet) to Boost App Performance

Microsoft has unveiled Garnet, a next-generation open-source cache-store system designed to improve app and service speed significantly.

Here’s a breakdown of the key points:

  • Garnet’s Benefits: This new technology can significantly speed up apps and services by improving data storage and retrieval.
  • Microsoft’s Implementation: Microsoft is already using Garnet internally for products like Windows and Azure services, demonstrating its effectiveness.
  • Open-Source Surprise: In a shift from previous practices, Microsoft is releasing Garnet as open-source on GitHub, allowing for wider adoption and development.
  • Hardware Compatibility: Modern PCs and laptops should be compatible with Garnet, allowing most Windows 10 and 11 users to benefit from this innovation.
  • Addressing Legacy Issues: Garnet aims to overcome the limitations of older cache systems by being open-source and platform-agnostic, making upgrades and multi-platform functionality easier.
  • Collaboration Push: By opening Garnet to the public, Microsoft encourages further development, research, and collaboration within the tech community.

Garnet presents a promising open-source tool from Microsoft with the potential to accelerate software performance for developers and users alike.

This is just a glimpse of the fascinating tech news unfolding this month. Stay tuned for our upcoming articles for a deeper dive into advancements and future development.

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