The latest update to News Pro adds a personal news agent called Rowe, an automated bot that will help you find news and perform other tasks within the app.
Considering Microsoft Garage is a skunkworks division that works outside normal product teams to deliver services not suitable for normal Microsoft services, it is gathering pace. The division is releasing new apps, services, and updates at a fast rate and the latest is News Pro 2.0, the second iteration of the news curator.
The first News Pro was launched earlier in the year, and the new update expands on the initial release with new features and performance improvements. The app still performs the same function, allowing users on the Web or iPhone to see aggregated news based on their interests and work, but it now has some tidy new features.
Microsoft Garage has introduced a new “personal news agent” to News Pro 2.0 which the company calls Rowe. This agent will collect news items based on topics you have chosen and you can request specific news from Rowe, or see headlines and perform other tasks.
“Reading news, especially work-related news, can sometimes be a bit dry. A bot that can have some basic conversation with you could make news reading more fun. News Pro bot is your news agent at your beck and call. Try talking to the bot about any news topic on your mind, playing with the assisted keyboard.”
Rowe is a pretty exciting addition while another new feature is more mundane but still welcome. The Groups function lets users share news items from News Pro with friends or contacts within a pre-determined group.
The change log goes beyond these two new features, as Microsoft Garage details:
Introducing Groups. Come and share news and exchange your opinions with colleagues and friends in groups. It’s a popular place where people take a break.
Introducing personal news bot, Rowe. Rowe is your personal news agent and can keep up with interesting topics and stories with you all day long. Moreover, he is going to surprise you once you upload a selfie and share with him.
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