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End of Skype for Business, AI Copywriter Beats Human & More News

This week in tech news: Microsoft is killing Skype for Business in 2021, JPMorgan hires AI copywriter that performed better than a human and Hyperloop India becoming a reality with nods from the government.

 Tech news you need to know, in two minutes or less.



Skype for Business Online to Teams transition

Microsoft signals the end for Skype for Business Online, asking Teams to take over


Microsoft is slowly nudging business customers away from Skype, and over to Teams, by shutting down Skype for Business Online. Skype for Business Online won't go away immediately; in fact, it won't officially close until July 31, 2021. But if you're a new user who logs on after September 1, you won't be able to access Skype for Business Online. You'll be kicked to Teams instead.


Microsoft isn't making changes to the Skype version used by consumers, or to the Skype Business server edition. But if you've logged into the Skype for Business web app at work, Teams will load instead.  As part of its Skype for Business Online to Teams transition, Microsoft will enable Skype consumer users to communicate with Teams ones using chat and calling starting in Q1 2020.


Chase commits to AI after machines outperform humans in copywriting trials

JPMorgan picks AI over humans to write ads


JPMorgan Chase, the largest U.S. bank, says New York-based Persado’s “artificial intelligence message machine” wrote ads that generated two to five times the response it got from traditional human copywriters. So, it has rewarded Persado with a five-year deal “to generate the highest-performing marketing creative” content using artificial intelligence, or AI.


The difference can be as simple as what word choice resonates with consumers. One digital ad written by humans read, “Access cash from the equity in your home.” However, Persado’s version, “It’s true—You can unlock cash from the equity in your home,” performed better with customers. Kristin Lemkau, chief marketing officer of JPMorgan Chase said, “It rewrote copy and headlines that a marketer, using subjective judgment and their experience, likely wouldn’t have.”


Virgin Hyperloop One First in India

Hyperloop project in India inches closer to reality

There is no fully functional hyperloop in the world, but that could soon change. The Maharashtra government gave the final nod for constructing a hyperloop between India’s financial capital Mumbai and Pune, which is 200 kilometres away. The authorities have tagged it a “public infrastructure” project much like roads, bridges, and railways, setting it up to be the first hyperloop project in the world, the makers claim.


A hyperloop is an ultra-high-speed ground transportation system akin to bullet trains. The Mumbai-Pune hyperloop is expected to slash the 3.5 hour travel time between the two cities to 35 minutes, according to the press release. Officials in Maharashtra have named Virgin Hyperloop One and its partner shipping giant DP World as the originators of the multibillion-dollar infrastructure project.


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