According to a report from The Information, Apple has plans in iOS 18 to enhance Siri’s capabilities by utilizing language models. The aim is to improve Siri to help users in doing tough multi-step tasks using voice commands.
For example, Siri could perform a number of actions such as capturing many photos, converting them into a GIF, and then sending the resulting GIF to a friend, all in a single command. While it’s currently possible to automate photo-to-GIF conversion through the Shortcuts app, this requires manual setup.
Everything about the Apple’s Siri
Siri’s upgraded functionality will resemble what the Shortcuts app can achieve, and it’s likely that Siri will integrate more deeply with Shortcuts. Shortcuts have evolved into a vital component of the iPhone operating system, empowering users to execute powerful automated actions. Apple maintains a library of Shortcut options for a wide range of tasks, from background removal in images to creating to-do lists.
According to reports, Apple wants to introduce these new Siri features as part of the iOS in the coming year, indicating it could be integrated into iOS 18. On the other hand, Google is also working on enhancing Google Assistant with language model software capable of handling intricate tasks. Therefore, Apple may aim to outpace Google in this regard or, at the very least, offer similar capabilities in a comparable timeframe.
Siri has faced criticism in the past for lagging behind voice assistants from other companies like Google and Alexa. This is primarily attributed to Apple’s emphasis on security and privacy. Many Siri tasks are processed on the user’s device rather than through remote servers, so Apple must strike a balance between safeguarding privacy and enhancing functionality when incorporating language models into Siri.
Although the forthcoming iOS 17 update, scheduled for release in a few weeks, doesn’t introduce substantial new Siri features, it does include crucial functionality that serves as a foundation for multi-step tasks. In iOS 17, Siri can recognize and respond to multiple consecutive requests without requiring reactivation, a feature unavailable in iOS 16. For example, you can inquire about the time and then follow up with a request to send a text to a friend about your tardiness without needing separate commands.
Furthermore, with iOS 17, Apple is eliminating the need for the “Hey” wake word, enabling users to activate Siri simply by saying “Siri.” This change promotes more natural interactions with Siri.