Ina Fried Mar 1, 2017
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Samsung's bill to take on Apple's Siri topped $200 million

Samsung spent 238.9 billion Korean Won ($209 million) for last year's acquisition of Viv Labs, a 30-person voice AI startup from the creators of Apple's Siri. The figure was confirmed in a regulatory filing this week.

Viv's technology, or at least a version of it, is expected to show up in the Galaxy S8, due to be unveiled in New York next month.

Why it matters: While it relies on Google for the Android OS, Samsung isn't willing to defer to the search giant when it comes to the increasingly high stakes area of an AI-powered assistant.

Zachary Basu 7 mins ago
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What to watch for in Egypt's sham election

Sisi billboard
A billboard in Cairo voicing support for Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in the upcoming election. Photo by KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images.

Egyptians will vote March 26-28 in a presidential election that is sure to see incumbent strongman Abdel Fattah el-Sisi handily defeat Mousa Mostafa Mousa — the sole challenger who hasn't been jailed or intimidated into dropping out.

The backdrop: Sisi, the former minister of defense and commander-in-chief of the Egyptian Armed Forces, led a military coup to topple President Mohamed Morsi in 2013. He formally came to power in 2014 after winning 96% of the vote in the presidential election, but has since seen his popularity wane under deteriorating economic conditions and an oppressive human rights record.

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Trump: Transgender people "disqualified" from the military

SecDef Jim Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford.
Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford. Photo: Andrew Harrer-Pool / Getty Images

President Trump late Friday issued an order disqualifying most transgender people from serving in the military.

"[T]ransgender persons with a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria -- individuals who the policies state may require substantial medical treatment, including medications and surgery -- are disqualified from military service except under certain limited circumstances."

Why it matters: Anything short of an inclusive policy for transgender troops will be viewed as a continuation of the ban Trump announced on Twitter in August.