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Turkey’s finance minister quits as currency plunges in value

Turkey's Finance Minister, Lutfi Elvan, has resigned amid another plunge in the value of the country's currency, the lira. He is being replaced by his deputy, Nureddin Nebati, who supports President Erdogan's controversial economic policies. The lira has lost almost half of its value this year as the President has pushed for low interest rates, despite rising inflation. Also today, we look at how some French parents are choosing to rent toys for their children, instead of buying new ones.

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Alibaba Cloud Integrates Tongyi Qianwen into AI Assistant to Enhance Productivity

Guangzhou, China, June 1, 2023 – Alibaba Cloud, the digital technology and intelligence backbone of Alibaba Group, announced today that its large language model (LLM), Tongyi Qianwen, has been integrated into its intelligent assistant named Tingwu. The assistant excels at converting speech and videos to text in real-time, aiming to enhance both personal and workplace productivity.

The recently launched LLM enables Tingwu to comprehend and analyze multimedia content with high levels of accuracy and efficiency, such as generating summary text from video and audio files, capturing key talking points for each speaker, and creating a timeline of multimedia files with a summary of each section.

The LLM-powered Tingwu, called “Tongyi Tingwu”, is now available for public beta testing. Tongyi Tingwu will also be integrated into DingTalk, Alibaba’s digital collaboration workplace and application development platform, supporting users’ AI demands at work. In addition to improving workplace efficiency, Tongyi Tingwu can also be used across various multimedia platforms, responding to the growing needs for faster and easier knowledge sharing in online education, training, interviews, livestreaming, podcasts, and short-form videos.

“We live at a time when a growing amount of video and audio content is being consumed in various formats every day. In line with this, Tongyi Tingwu aims to use the large language model to facilitate faster and better comprehension and easier sharing of multimedia content,” said Jingren Zhou, CTO of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence. “As we gradually integrate the Tongyi Qianwen model into our products and services, we hope users can reap the benefits from these compelling AI innovations for their work, study, play and interaction with each other.”

By leveraging proprietary audio and video models developed by Alibaba’s research institute DAMO – including the self-developed speech recognition model Paraformer and speaker verification model CAM++, along with the newly-released LLM Tongyi Qianwen – Tingwu can transcribe video and audio files with higher accuracy while enabling numerous AI-powered features. Additional AI features offered by Tongyi Tingwu will be available later this year. These features include automatically compiling text answers to address user queries across audio/video files, generating a summary based on PowerPoint slides extracted from videos, and providing real-time translation between English and Chinese for multimedia content with Tingwu as a Chrome plugin.

General public can access the upgraded AI-powered assistant online ( starting from today to experience its capabilities through their Alibaba Cloud accounts and receive free transcription services as part of an open trial.

Alibaba Cloud unveiled Tongyi Qianwen on April 11, which is scheduled to be integrated across Alibaba’s various businesses to improve the user experience in the near future. The company’s customers and developers will have access to the model to create customized AI features in a cost-effective manner, too.

The cloud pioneer also launched the “Tongyi Qianwen Partnership Program,” aiming to co-create large language models tailored for different industries with partners across sectors, including petrochemicals, electricity, transportation, hospitality, enterprise services, telecommunications and finance.


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POCO Unveils Milestone X-Series Additions: POCO X5 Pro 5G and POCO X5 5G

Unlock the Secret to Win with POCO X5 Pro 5G or enjoy the right balance of everything you need with the mid-range POCO X5 5G.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 6 February 2023-In celebration of POCO’s 5th anniversary and in response to Gen-Z consumers looking for something fresh and different, POCO will be launching two new smartphones in the United Arab Emirates, the POCO X5 Pro and POCO X5 5G which come packed with innovative and exciting features that will delight tech enthusiasts.

The POCO X5 Pro 5G has an upgraded camera function, faster processing speeds, and a stunning display. In addition, the POCO X5 5G sets a high standard for mid-range smartphones with powerful performance, a long-lasting battery, and a stunning display.

Innovative mobile experiences have captivated young technology fans with POCO’s X-series smartphones. The POCO X5 series for 2023 is the culmination of deep research into the preferences of young content consumers and creators.

According to POCO’s Global Head of Product Marketing, Angus Ng, “The POCO X5 5G offers amazing value and the most satisfying user experience of a smartphone under AED 1000.”

POCO X5 Pro 5G: a winning combination of superb visuals and advanced camera capabilities

POCO X5 Pro 5G comes with a 6.67″ Flow AMOLED screen creating a world of its own. Flexible display technology makes it lighter and thinner than any other X series device.  With 120Hz refresh rate and 100% DCI-P3 color depth and 10-bit color depth, photos and videos come to life. The 120Hz refresh rate ensures bright and ultra-smooth images.

Whenever inspiration strikes at night, the POCO X5 Pro 5G’s 1920Hz PWM dimming protects your eyesight. The Snapdragon® 778G 5G chipset makes camera processing more efficient and faster. Camera performance has been improved by 41% for setup, 69% for photography, and 38% for night mode.

In addition to supporting 5.5 hours of 4K shooting, its 5000mAh battery is an undeniable plus for video creators. The 108MP sensor will allow you to take professional photos in dark areas, and in just 7 minutes, you can boost your battery to 30%.

POCO X5 5G: just the right mix of a fantastic experience

The POCO X5 5G redefines ideas about mid-range smartphones with everything Gen Z users need. Super light with a slim 6.67-inch AMOLED DotDisplay, and weighing only 189g, POCO X5 5G always feels comfortable. Gaming fans will appreciate the 120Hz refresh rate and 4,500,000:1 contrast ratio that guarantees a smooth, life-like gaming experience, and DCI-P3 wide color gamut brings images to life for a visual feast.

With the Snapdragon® 695 chipset, POCO X5 5G delivers a smooth user experience with enjoyable content at high download speeds. Multitasking users can run apps in the background and switch between them.

With a long-lasting 5000mAh battery, POCO X5 5G has you covered for work, gaming, movies, and TikTok.You can say goodbye to battery anxiety thanks to fast-charging technology; watching YouTube videos can last over 21 hours. A POCO battery can be recharged to 100% in about 68 minutes with its 33W fast charger. You can scroll and interact on social media for 12 hours on a fully charged battery.

Product availability

POCO X5 Pro 5G will come in Black, Blue, and Yellow and one variant of 8GB+256GB for a price of 1549 AED starting February 7th. POCO X5 5G will come in Green, Blue, and Black, in two variants: 6GB+128GB available for purchase at an early bird price of 799 AED exclusively via Amazon, and 8GB+256GB at 999 AED.

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An Accurate Sound, Crystal Clear Audio Precision, and A More Enjoyable Listening Experience with LG Sound Bar

 DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, February 06, 2023 —Unlock exceptional sounds with LG Electronics (LG) Sound Bar that reveals stunning details in the music. An ultimately enjoyable listening experience with high-resolution audio for crystal clear precision. The sound delivered from LG Sound Bar has an automatic sound tuning technology “AI Room Calibration Pro” that compensates and balances settings with your environment for natural and realistic sound.


Better Together

An advanced and luxurious TV won’t fully deliver an immersive experience without proper speakers. Get the most from the games, movies, and TV shows by connecting your TV to the LG Sound Bar. LG Sound Bar is the best match for your TV to elevate your home cinema experience, taking you to a next level of audio for today’s at-home movie nights. Watching TV will become more of a lifelike experience, as LG Sound Bar supports VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) and ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode), enabling you to enjoy smooth reduced image tearing from a connected console and TV. Cross-compatibility allows LG TV owners to use one remote to control both the TV and the soundbar.


A Superb Voice Clarity

Experience a room-filling sound with LG Sound Bar with its up-firing rear speakers that enable you to hear sound from all around. Its 6-channel (4.0.2ch) Rear Speakers distribute 135 degrees of sound, to enhance and enjoy an incredibly immersive at your in-home cinema experience.

LG Sound Bar is made to match your day-to-day lifestyle.

You will be able to effortlessly control streaming music, adjust volume, change sound modes, and control streaming music, using only your voice. Wirelessly connect between your compatible TV & LG Sound Bar with LG WOWCAST to enjoy lossless multi-channel audio.

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