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Thursday, 16 June 2016

Apple working in strengthening Siri with AI technologies.......

Apple has said it will strengthen its digital secretary service Siri with artificial intelligence (AI) technologies such as machine learning for its new iOS10 mobile operating system.

At the Worldwide Developers Conference 2016 in San Francisco, Monday, the company also pledged to open Siri to more diverse third party service providers. During the announcement of iOS10 and its new upgrades, Apple Senior Vice President Craig Federighi demonstrated sending a text message through WeChat, the most-used mobile messenger app in China, by orally ordering it to Siri.

The moves have been seen as a countermeasure to the rapid advancement of other AI-based digital secretary services such as Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and Facebook's interactive chatting software "Chatbot." This also strikes a contrast to Apple in the past when it had insisted on a closed environment while its competitors like Google expanded their presence on the back of the openness of the Android system.

Apple said it will also connect Siri to other services such as the mobile call taxi service Uber and users will able to call a taxi by ordering the digital secretary to reserve one.

To this end, the company will open the software development kit (SDK) for Siri to non-Apple application developers to encourage them to roll out more creative apps, enlarging the market ecosystem for the service.

Besides Siri, Apple said it will also open its text messaging app "iMessage," map information app "Maps" and interactive touch recognition technology "3D Touch" to third party developers. Expectations are that Apple will have a chance to challenge Google's market dominance once more apps compatible with the company's exclusive technologies are available on the market.

According to global mobile market researcher Strategy Analytics, 83.6 percent of smartphones sold in the first quarter had Google's Android system on the back of strong performances by handset makers like Samsung Electronics and Huawei, whereas Apple's iOS, which is exclusive to iPhones, was only 15.4 percent.

Limited openness?

Though it is true that Apple rarely opens its key system service, the company has also shown that it still wants to control the system as the Siri SDK is not compatible with all third party apps.

The company said the Siri SDK will support apps only in six areas ― ride booking, messaging, photo search, payments, audiovisual calls and workout assistance ― adding Apple's automobile information system CarPlay. This means that apps in other criteria such as music streaming, email and productivity cannot be controlled using Siri for now.

"Considering that Apple has insisted on going this way, it will not easily give up control over the data transaction that runs beneath its systems," an industry source said. "The company has also established an image that it values users' privacy. It will open the SDK to more third party developers but only through thorough consideration on security."

Credit: Koreatimes

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