Sep 2, 2017

Alexa vs. Siri: The big race for the best virtual assistant

Whole Foods near Axios World HQ in Arlington, Va., on Day 2 of Amazon control

"Amazon, Google, Microsoft racing to make their virtual assistants more powerful and pervasive," per Wall Street Journal front-pager by Laura Stevens and Tripp Mickle:

  • "Amazon is adding hundreds of engineers to the Alexa program and giving it hiring preference over other divisions."
  • "Apple still has the greatest reach among voice assistants, with Siri accessed monthly on more than 375 million Apple devices across 36 countries."
  • Amazon also has been aggressively signing deals with other companies to add Alexa to products ranging from Ford Motor Co.cars to Sears Holdings Corp.'s Kenmore refrigerators."
  • "Google said this week that it would open its assistant to other speaker makers including Sony Corp. , and to appliance makers like LG Electronics Inc., to incorporate the assistant into dryers and vacuums."

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What the coronavirus means for Trump's presidency

Photo Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images

A poor response to the coronavirus could be politically devastating for President Trump, and so far his administration has given the strong impression that it’s still scrambling as the risk of a pandemic mounts.

Why it matters: There’s only so much any president can do to stop a virus from spreading, and for now the coronavirus is still very much under control within the U.S. But if the disease get worse in the months ahead, and if the administration seems to be caught off guard, that spells trouble for public confidence in Trump.

Coronavirus updates: New global case numbers surpass China's

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. As Denmark and Estonia reported their first cases Thursday, Scott Morrison, prime minister of Australia — which has 23 confirmed infections — told a news conference, "The risk of a global pandemic is very much upon us."

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 hours ago - Health

Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Molson Coors Brewing Company in Milwaukee Molson Coors on Wednesday, including the 51-year-old gunman, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at an evening press conference with local police.

Details: All of the victims worked at the brewery complex, as did the shooter who died of "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, police confirmed in a statement late Wednesday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy