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Medcare Launches New Healthcare Chatbot

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Medcare today announced the launch of its new “virtual health assistant” chatbots which are set to revolutionise the way patients in the UAE region access healthcare services. The two new health assistants use advanced artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms to learn about the patient in order to personalise responses and give accurate information in real-time.

Distinctive technology means that the Medcare health assistants are the first and only chatbots in the region that allow the patient to manage all aspects of their appointments online including booking, rescheduling and cancelling, permitted by real-time backend database integration. The new technology is also being continually optimized by developers to set it far ahead of competitors; key IT, marketing, call centre and operation stakeholders collaborated in designing the enhanced user journey to ensure a holistic, 360° approach.

Medcare market research found 41% of patients indicated the need for an end-to-end online solution that enables and empowers them to take control of their personal healthcare journey. Real-time database integrations, AI and machine learning have been merged to produce a top-of-the-line chatbot platform with turn-key implementation that has been built upon market predecessors, combining best practices and patient feedback to ensure the Medcare chatbots are more advanced and fully optimized to make the best use of available technology.

The most distinctive feature of the chatbot technology is that it has been humanized to make the health assistants intuitive, patient-centric and patient-friendly. Patients will be able to “talk” to the health assistants and use this new platform throughout their entire healthcare journey. Patients can book, reschedule and cancel appointments online. An advanced algorithm will enable patients to check and analyze their symptoms and match them with the relevant doctor, specialty and Medcare facility location.

Patients can also see lab reports online, check insurance coverage at their convenience and locate the nearest Medcare centre to ultimately optimize the patient journey to receive timely treatment. The new Medcare health assistant AI technologies hold real value in reducing the burden on doctors in primary and secondary care by allowing better organisation of patient pathways and by offering real-time solutions for medical issues.

Recent reports suggest healthcare chatbot interactions will grow to reach 2.8 billion by 2023. Moreover, market research has found the global healthcare chatbot market which was valued at USD 123 million in 2018 is expected to generate around USD 470 million by 2025, with a compound annual growth rate of 21.2%. The dramatic growth in use of AI and chatbots is expected to be reflected in an increase in the UAE region in particular, due to  a high percentage of internet users, increasing digital awareness and government investment into healthcare infrastructure.

Alisha Moopen, Executive Director and CEO, Aster & Medcare Hospitals and Clinics, GCC, “In life, getting to a doctor when you are sick is a stressful experience. When you add to the experience having to call a call centre to schedule an appointment; it’s very frustrating. We, at Medcare, try to put ourselves in the shoes of our patients and to and create an environment, a solution and a system that helps and enables you to have the right information at the right time to help take care of your healthcare needs. We give the power to our patients to make life a bit easier for them in this hectic fast paced world.”

“Today’s empowered healthcare consumer expects technologies to meet them where they are. It is up to healthcare providers to recognise this, integrate capabilities and employ the latest digital technologies available. The advantage with chatbot technology is the ability to combine both human and artificial intelligence to transform customer service, providing an overall seamless experience with optimised productivity and outcome,” she continued.

Andre Daoud, Group Chief Executive Officer of Medcare Hospitals and Medical Centres said, “At Medcare, we continually strive to explore new ways to integrate technology and support the effective care of our patients. We keep our patients at the centre of everything we do, especially in the development of digital tools and services, by running focus groups to understand patient needs and identify any gaps in the healthcare market. Our chatbots were developed as our patients indicated the need for an end-to-end online solution that empowers them to take control of their personal healthcare journey. The chatbots are even being named by our patients through a contest, so they have a real sense of ownership on this project.”

“Our Medcare chatbots are set apart from competitors in the healthcare market as we are implementing novel technology and real-time backend database integration, meaning we are able to offer our patients an advanced end-to-end, patient-centric solution. Other healthcare chatbots in the region only permit appointment requests without real-time integration, so our chatbots are really going to be game-changing,” noted Daoud. “Chatbots and artificial intelligence technology are proving to have huge potential in aiding medical assistance and transforming the healthcare sector” he ended.

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Gadgets

Oral-B Launches the iO Electric Toothbrush in the Region

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Oral-B has launched the iO toothbrush in the region, ensuring a professional level clean feeling is achievable at home every day. This latest addition to the brand’s line of electric toothbrushes comes after six years of intensive product research and development and over 250 patents from around the world. The iO boasts a coveted position as 2020’s CES Innovation Award Honorees due to its advanced technology.

The UAE will be the first market in the Middle East and Africa region to launch the innovative Oral-B iO electric toothbrush. P&G’s use of cutting-edge technologies to develop connected, innovative products that transform everyday consumer experiences, aligns with the “Creating the Future” agenda of Expo 2020 Dubai. Oral-B iO combines best-ever clinical performance with a superior user experience, making it one of the industry’s most advanced brushing products.

According to the company, in clinical tests, Oral-B iO provided a deeper cleaning of teeth and gums, allowing users to easily and effectively maintain oral health. When compared to manual toothbrushes, Oral-B iO users experienced:

  • 100 percent more plaque removal after eight weeks vs a regular manual toothbrush
  • 100 percent healthier gums in just one week vs a regular manual toothbrush

“There is nothing like the Oral-B iO. It introduces a new era in brushing and is a monumental leap in innovative oral care technology,” said Paolo Zilianti, Senior Brand Director, Oral Care Middle East & Africa. “The result of years of expert development, Oral-B iO strikes the right balance between effectiveness and experience and reimagines how a brush performs, cleans, and feels. It is a brush that people will look forward to using and will deliver superior oral health. Aligning with the UAE’s digital transformation strategy, P&G is constructively disrupting its business to deliver experiences that reinvent what people expect of everyday products.”

The Oral-B iO uniquely features a frictionless magnetic drive, which distributes energy more efficiently to the tips of the bristles, resulting in a smooth, quiet, sensational cleaning experience. The new magnetic drive delivers cleaning energy to the redesigned iO brush head, which has been engineered to combine oscillating and rotating cleaning motions with micro-vibrations for a professional clean feel. As a result of input from more than 1,800 consumers, the Oral-B iO includes five key pillars of design features and experience capabilities:

  • Linear Magnetic Drive: created from the need to deliver an effective and enjoyable brushing routine. Producing controlled, harmonious movements, the quiet and frictionless linear drive system efficiently transfers more energy directly to the bristle tips.
  • Superior Cleaning Action and Redesigned Brush Head: Oral-B iO brush heads combine oscillating, rotating movements with micro-vibrations to ensure a deep clean that reaches every contour. The brush head has been redesigned with twisted bristles, and reinforced with a high-density tuft-in-tuft configuration, for a sensational brushing experience.
  • Bimodal Smart Pressure Sensor: an innovation that is the first of its kind to provide positive brushing feedback, identifying and guiding users to brush in the optimal pressure range. The Sensor features a variable-speed smart drive that adjusts the frequency to protect gums and enamel.
  • Smart Display with Personalised Brushing Modes: an intuitive interface that greets users, while also providing coaching and motivation throughout the cleaning process. Features up to seven brush modes for a highly personalized experience.
  • Artificial Intelligence Tracking via the Oral-B iO App: provides real-time individual tracking and coaching, thanks to artificial intelligence informed by thousands of recorded brushing sessions. Oral-B iO has a simple and intuitive user interface that guides consumers through a two-minute brushing session with 3D teeth tracking across 16 zones (in the iO9) to ensure a professional clean feeling every time.

The new Oral-B iO is available for purchase in the UAE immediately and is available in the following colours and prices:

  • Oral-B iO 9 Series Black: AED 1499
  • Oral-B iO 7 Series White: AED 899
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Audio Devices

Sony MEA Intros Dolby Atmos HT-A9 Soundbar Powered by 360 Spatial Sound Mapping Tech

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Sony Middle East & Africa has announced the launch of its premium HT-A9 surround sound system, delivering revolutionary multi-dimensional sound experiences in the region. The innovative surround sound technology creates an incredibly immersive home theatre and soundscape experience. “Music, film, and gaming content is richer and more immersive with the Sony HT-A9, a new and powerful era for our portfolio of home audio products. Its unique optimization features enable anyone the ability to create immersive cinematic experiences at home,” said, Shintaro Hayatani, Head of Marketing, Sony Middle East & Africa.

The 360 Spatial Sound Mapping technology of the Sony HT-A9 can create up to twelve phantom speakers from just four real speakers by synthesizing sound waves based on the positional information. An ultra-wide listening area fills every part of your living space so your family and friends get the same sound experience. The listening area is not limited to the front of the TV but encompasses a much wider space.

The HT-A9 also supports Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, so users can experience cinematic surround sound without leaving home. Surrounded on all sides by multiple phantom speakers within an optimised sound field, you’ll hear every flap of wing and gust of wind with incredible intensity. It’s like you and your living room are inside the movie. The HT-A9 features Sony’s latest Omnidirectional Block Design. The cylindrical shape represents a single solid block providing 360 spatial sound. It fits perfectly against the wall with a flat rear surface. Its light pearl grey color can seamlessly blend with most decor schemes. The inside of the speakers features rectangular X-Balanced Speaker Units to maximize the diaphragm area for richer bass and sound pressure.

Enjoy music the way the artists truly intended with High-Resolution Audio and 360 Reality Audio, which immerses users in music as if they were right in front of their favourite artist and can be streamed through Apple Music. The A9 also features DSEE Extreme, which restores the high-range sound of compressed digital music in real-time. Paired with compatible BRAVIA televisions, the HT-A9 offers the ultimate immersive audio-visual experience with Sony’s best picture and sound quality. With Acoustic Center Sync, the HT-A9 precisely matches where the audio is coming from with what’s on the screen for even deeper immersion.

HT-A7000 Home Theater System
Sony Middle East & Africa also launched the flagship HT-A7000 soundbar, delivering a new and revolutionary multi-dimensional sound experience. The 7.1.2-channel soundbar features two up-firing speakers for overhead sound, two beam tweeters and five front speakers for wider surround, and a built-in dual subwoofer for deep bass, giving the feeling of the action happening above and from every corner of the living room with innovative surround sound technologies.

Thanks to Sony’s Vertical Surround Engine and S-Force PRO Front Surround, the A7000 can position sound in vertical space to create overhead audio without the need for in-ceiling speakers. The soundbar can virtually reproduce the surround sound field, with audio coming from both horizontal directions. Featuring Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, and the Sound Field Optimization, the A7000 utilizes built-in microphones to intelligently measure the height and width of the room, as well as the position of an optional subwoofer and rear speakers, and perfectly optimizes sound to the room’s layout.

The HT-A9 and HT-A7000 are now available in the Middle East and Africa.

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Gadgets

Acer Launches new Large-Screen Chromebooks for Work, School, and Entertainment

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Acer has debuted four new Chromebooks that meet a range of customer needs, ranging from home and business users to hybrid workers and students. Equipped with the latest processors and sought-after features such as reliable Wi-Fi 6, video conferencing technology, and durable designs, the new Acer Chromebooks keep customers connected, productive, and entertained. “Acer’s expansive line of Chromebooks means that we’re well-equipped to meet any sort of customer need—from the display size, processors, durability, connectivity and more,” said James Lin, General Manager, Notebooks, IT Products Business, Acer Inc. “Whether a customer needs a device for work, school or entertainment, we’ve got a Chromebook with exactly the features they’re looking for.”

Acer Chromebook Spin 514
Featuring a compact design and 14-inch FHD display, the new Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (CP514-2H) and Acer Chromebook Spin Enterprise 514 were designed to provide maximum performance for productive multitasking and video conferencing. Powered by up to 11th Gen Intel Core i7 processors, the new Chromebooks are performance-minded yet run silently, utilizing a fan-less design that is ideal for shared workspaces. The Chromebook’s 14-inch FHD IPS 14-inch display has narrow borders on all four sides, allowing for an 84% screen-to-body ratio.

When video conferencing, an FHD MIPI webcam leverages a blue glass filter and noise-reduction technology to provide clearer images and reduced light flares. The device’s dual upward-facing speakers flank the keyboard and combine with dual microphones to deliver a clear video conferencing experience, DTS Audio provides high-quality surround sound, and a built-in smart amplifier enhances the Chromebook’s speakers for louder and clearer audio.

The new Chromebook Spin 514 and Chromebook Spin Enterprise 514 sport a convertible design, empowering hybrid employees with the ability to choose the right form factor for each job, whether laptop, tablet, tent, or display mode. The device is also durable: it has a reinforced design with aluminum top and bottom covers and carries a MIL-STD 810H certification. Additionally, the Chromebook comes with an array of additional features, including dual USB Type-C ports, a Corning Gorilla Glass touchpad, a backlit keyboard, and reliable Intel Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+).

Acer Chromebook 515
The Acer Chromebook 515 (CB515-1W/T) and Acer Chromebook Enterprise 515 continue Acer’s track record of creating award-winning large-screen Chromebooks for customers who need a powerful device to tackle projects for work, home use, and even play. The Acer Chromebook Enterprise 515 is ideal for businesses utilizing cloud technology and for IT administrators to deploy, manage and secure their cloud workforce. The new Chromebooks are powered by up to 11th Gen Intel Core i7 processors and Intel Iris Xe Graphics, plus up to 512 GB PCIe NVMe storage and up to 16 GB of RAM, delivering responsive performance and allowing the Chromebook to wake from sleep in less than a second.

A huge 15.6-inch FHD IPS display, available with optional multi-touch capability, delivers extra real-estate for multi-tasking—complemented by DTS Audio for high-quality surround sound and built-in smart amplifiers for louder, clearer audio. Advanced conferencing technology helps to keep employees connected whether working from the office or home, further enhanced by dual microphones that help users’ voices to come through clearly, while a webcam shutter protects their privacy when the video conference is done.

Boasting military-grade (U.S. MIL-STD 810H) durability, the Chromebook 515 and Chromebook Enterprise 515 have an aluminum top cover and a reinforced design that is both protective and stylish. A smooth Corning Gorilla Glass touchpad ensures that tapping, swiping and scrolling are smooth and accurate, while a numeric keypad further enhances its backlit keyboard. Additionally, these new 15.6-inch Chromebooks feature best-in-class connectivity with two USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C ports (one on each side) for data transfers, power delivery, and sharing video and audio to external displays. They also connect wirelessly with Intel Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) and include HDMI and microSD.

Acer Chromebook 514
The Acer Chromebook 514 (CB514-2H/T) features an ultraportable design with the latest technology to promote efficient and responsive performance. Powered by an octa-core MediaTek Kompanio 828 processor, the Chromebook handles everything from streaming entertainment to multitasking apps and creating content. It delivers all-day battery life of up to 15 hours and can be fast-charged to up to 50% of those battery’s capacity in only 30 minutes.

The sleek device weighs only 1.3 kg and measures just 16.85 mm thin (0.66 inches), making it compact enough to be taken anywhere. A stylish aluminum top cover delivers protection against dents, while a Corning Gorilla Glass touchpad provides smooth navigation. The Chromebook’s 14-inch matte display (multi-touch optional) has narrow bezels that highlight the visuals, while additional features like DTS Audio, a backlit keyboard, and USB Type-C ports make the Acer Chromebook 514 an all-around performer.

Acer Chromebook Spin 314
The Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (CP314-1H/N) features a unique environmentally-friendly OceanGlass touchpad made entirely out of the plastic waste that has been recycled into a glass-like texture to provide sleek and responsive tactile feedback. Contributing to the reduction of plastics adrift in the ocean, this Chromebook also features the latest Intel processors, up to a 14-inch FHD IPS touchscreen display with narrow 6 mm (0.24-inch) bezels and a 10-hour battery life that makes it a good choice for students. The new Chromebook also features a wide range of connectivity options, such as a USB 3.2 Type-C port, two USB 3.2 Type-A ports, an HDMI port, and a MicroSD slot, plus Wi-Fi 6 and 2×2 MU-MIMO technology for faster wireless speeds.

Acer Chromebook Enterprise devices provide employees with a modern experience and devices that stay fast, have built-in security, deploy quickly, and reduce the total cost of ownership. Acer Chromebooks with Chrome Enterprise Upgrade unlocks the built-in capabilities of Chrome OS, allowing IT to deploy, orchestrate, and power the cloud workforce securely and effectively from anywhere. The new Acer Chromebooks all support apps via Google Play and web-based apps, so users will have access to all the apps they love for productivity, creativity, and more.

The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (CP514-2H) will be available in EMEA in October starting at EUR 799. Acer Chromebook Enterprise Spin 514 will be available in EMEA in October starting at EUR 1,049. The Acer Chromebook 515 (CB515-1W/T) will be available in EMEA in October starting at EUR 499. The Acer Chromebook Enterprise 515 will be available in EMEA in October starting at EUR 799. The Acer Chromebook 514 (CB514-2H/T) will be available in EMEA in November starting at EUR 399. The Acer Chromebook Spin 314 (CP314-1H/N) will be available in EMEA in October starting at EUR 449.

Exact specifications, prices, and availability will vary by region.

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