This website chronicles a comprehensive list of things you can do with Siri

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 1, 2016

As Apple continues perfecting Siri and adding new operations to her arsenal of supported actions, chronicling everything the digital personal assistant can do on your behalf is becoming increasingly difficult, even for Apple itself which highlights only the most popular Siri queries on its website.

That’s where a new website, aptly named Hey Siri, jumps in. As first discovered by The Loop, it’s a comprehensive list of things you can do with Siri which uses crowdsourced data to share some of the most successful queries made to the digital assistant. Read More

 

tvOS’s Universal Search feature gains support for Comedy Central, MTV and VH1

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 15, 2016

Universal Search feature on the fourth-generation Apple TV has been refreshed yesterday with expanded support for searching content provided by tvOS video apps from Viacom-owned Comedy Central and music networks MTV and VH1. Provided these apps are installed on your set-top box, you can either use the Search app on the device or press the Siri button on the remote and use your voice to find shows like South Park and others. Read More

 

How to simulate tetherless ‘Hey Siri’ functionality on macOS Sierra like a pro

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 13, 2016

Apple advertises Siri as one of the headlining new features in the forthcoming macOS Sierra software update. Siri on the Mac performs in much the same way as it always has on an iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, except on the Mac tetherless ‘Hey Siri’ functionality is currently unsupported.

On iOS, tetherless ‘Hey Siri’ requires Apple’s embedded M9 motion coprocessor to monitor microphone input without taxing the battery. Since the battery isn’t a major concern with Macs, the decision not to implement ‘Hey Siri’ on Sierra is eyebrow-raising. As it turns out, you can easily simulate ‘Hey Siri’ on Sierra without resorting to dark magic, using a simple trickery. Read More

 

tvOS 10 preview: 4 new Siri features on Apple TV

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 11, 2016

Aside from Single Sign-On for pay-TV apps and other new features and enhancements, tvOS 10 brings expanded Siri capabilities to the fourth-generation Apple TV, including searching across even more apps, YouTube search, topic search and tuning right into live channels.

Both existing and new Siri features will be available in four new new countries when tvOS 10 launches this fall. Here’s our detailed preview along with a video hands-on of the above Siri features coming  to your big screen via tvOS 10. Read More

 

tvOS 10 preview: all-new Remote app with Siri voice control, tilt gaming & more

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 3, 2016

A software replacement for the physical remote that came in the box with your fourth-generation Apple TV, Apple’s entirely overhauled Remote application provides you with the full range of Siri Remote features complete with touch navigation, tilt-based control in games and voice input via Siri.

And in making tedious text entry on tvOS even easier than before, the new app lets you summon the keyboard right from the Lock screen of your iPhone by pressing a notification that automatically gets pushed every time you select a text field on the Apple TV. Read More

 

iOS 10 tidbit: ‘Hey Siri’ intelligently responds on one nearby device at a time

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 30, 2016

iOS 10 adjusts how a tetherless Siri feature works in a rather interesting way. Rather than have every single nearby device respond to the ‘Hey Siri’ command, creating a cacophony of multiple sounds, iOS 10 responds to the hotword on only one nearby device at a time.

As first discovered by 9to5Mac, the Siri waveform animation reveals that even though all nearby devices are listening for voice input all the time, iOS 10 intelligently determines which devices should stop listening and let just one device take the lead. Read More

 

iOS 10 preview: Siri comes to (some) apps & powers smarter QuickType keyboard suggestions

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 20, 2016

Siri has gained new features in iOS 10. Not only does she power smarter QuickType keyboard suggestions and lets you control HomeKit-compatible accessories using your voice, but Apple now officially supports third-party integration with SiriKit for developers.

In opening up Siri to apps, Apple’s taken the same controlled approach like with iOS multitasking by only permitting certain app types.

In this iOS 10 preview, we’re going to take a closer look at an improved QuickType keyboard with added Siri intelligence, explain specific app types that can take advantage of Siri and look into the technologies that make all of this possible.  Read More

 

macOS Sierra preview: Siri comes to the Mac

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 16, 2016

macOS Sierra brings the familiar features of Siri for iOS to the Mac with an attractive user interface, third-party integration and some interesting capabilities specifically designed for the desktop that are not supported on iOS. In addition to standard search queries, you can ask Siri to locate a specific document you worked on last night, add a meeting to your calendar, start a FaceTime call and more.

The Siri interface is interactive, letting you drag and drop items from search results into your documents.

You can even pin Siri searches in the Notification Center with live updating! Here’s our quick video preview of Siri for Mac in action and a detailed overview of the supported features that Apple hopes will make you more productive. Read More

 

Apple TV games are no longer required to support Siri Remote

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 14, 2016

Apple has dropped the requirement for tvOS games to use the Siri Remote, according to a refreshed version of the official Game Controller Programming Guide. With this change in place, games for the fourth-generation Apple TV are now permitted to require a ‘Made for iOS’ (MFi) controller without needing to also support the Siri Remote. Read More

 

Apple opens Siri to developers with iOS 10’s new SiriKit API

By Anthony Bouchard on Jun 13, 2016

iOS 10, which was unveiled at Apple’s WWDC 2016 Keynote on Monday, will provide users with the most in-depth Siri experience of any iOS release in history.

Apple is officially opening Siri up with an API that will let developers tap into Siri for their App Store apps. Read More

 

Here’s another hint that Siri is coming to the Mac

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 13, 2016

Siri is rumored to be coming to the Mac and third-party apps with an official Siri software development kit (SDK). In addition to teasing a dark mode in iOS 10, Siri seems to be also trolling Apple fans worldwide with an unusual reference to OS X Finder when asked to “open settings in the window.”

There are no windows in iOS, of course, so one would expect Siri to respond with an “I don’t understand” whereas she in fact says that “It doesn’t look like you have an app named ‘Finder’”, as first spotted by Brian Roemmele. Read More

 

Siri is trolling us ahead of WWDC keynote with vague hints of dark mode in iOS 10

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 13, 2016

Go ahead, pull an iPhone out of your pocket right now, press and hold the Home button and tell Siri to please “turn on dark mode”.

Much to your surprise, instead of responding with a “I didn’t quite get that”, “I don’t understand” or some such, she’ll inform you that “I’m not able to change that setting”.

As noted by AppleInsider, the wording is unusual given that iOS currently contains no reference to any kind of dark mode. Is Apple trolling us ahead of the keynote? Read More

 

Why I think Spotlight and Siri should be one

By Sébastien Page on Jun 7, 2016

Ever since the rumors of Siri making its way to the Mac began gaining credence, I started thinking about how I would like to use the feature on OS X, and what it would mean for Siri on iOS. As I was toying around with the idea of Siri on my Mac, something became apparent very quickly: Siri and Spotlight Search have a lot in common. So much so that maybe it would make sense to merge then into one feature at some point. Let me explain. Read More

 

Mark Gurman shares more details about upcoming WWDC announcements, new iPhones, and more

By Sébastien Page on Jun 4, 2016

While in between two jobs, reporter Mark Gurman appeared on the latest episode of The Jay & Farhad Show podcast, where he shared more details about what we might see at WWDC this year, including new iOS features and design tweaks. Gurman also revealed more information about this year and next year’s iPhone models.

While most of Gurman details were already known or rumored for a while, he did also offer information about features we hadn’t heard of until now. Read More

 

Thank you, Siri: mobile voice assistant usage is rising at a rapid clip

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 2, 2016

After perusing a massive 238-slide deck that is Mary Meeker’s new 2016 Internet Trends Report this morning, a slide has captured my attention that summarizes the trend toward voice searches and digital assistants. It says that in five years time at least half of all searches will be either through images or speech, which is fascinating.

What I find even more remarkable is the fact that Siri alone handled more than one billion requests per week through speech as of June 2015. Read More

 

What to do when Siri doesn’t pronounce your name right

By Anthony Bouchard on Jun 1, 2016

Siri is an amazing piece of software and Apple has tried so hard to make it capable of pronouncing everyone’s names right, but there are just too many names in the world for Siri to be perfect and pronouncing all of them.

On the other hand, if you’re sick of Siri not being able to pronounce your name correctly, there is a way to train her so she will pronounce it right going forward.

We’ll show you how this is done in this quick tutorial. Read More

 

How to type in your questions to Siri instead of using voice commands

By Sébastien Page on May 31, 2016

In a recent post I wrote about ten things I would like Siri for Mac to be able to do for me, I noted that I would like to be able to type in my requests instead of voicing them, because there are times when speaking to it isn’t appropriate (i.e. if you’re at the library), or even socially acceptable quite yet. I can already type basic queries into Spotlight on Mac, so why not bake Siri into Spotlight to supercharge both features?

There is already a workaround to type in your questions to Siri on iOS, and even though it’s not perfect, it’s sometimes handy to be able to write exactly what you mean and leave no room for misunderstanding. It doesn’t come without its fair share of limitations though, but it’s still pretty handy. Read More

 

How Apple’s advanced self-learning technologies could make Siri a lot smarter

By Christian Zibreg on May 30, 2016

The assistant wars are in full swing, with Google Assistant and Viv entering the fray and existing players such as Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, Hound and Google’s Now all stepping up fight for consumers’ hearts and minds.

Apple’s rumored Amazon Echo competitor, which VentureBeat believes is a next-gen Apple TV, could blow all the assistants out of the water when it comes to deciphering complex natural language queries.

And powering it—VocalIQ, a sophisticate technology Apple acquired back in October 2015. Tech Insider provided an in-depth overview of how VocalIQ could make Siri a lot smarter than it is today.  Read More

 

Apple’s Amazon Echo rival could detect users via built-in camera and facial recognition

By Christian Zibreg on May 27, 2016

Apple’s rumored Amazon Echo rival, which we learned yesterday could actually be an upgraded Apple TV, will have a built-in camera and use facial recognition to detect users as they enter the room, said the people briefed on Apple’s plans who spoke to CNET on condition of anonymity.

Upon recognizing a user, the device would pull up their preferences, such as the music and lighting they like, the sources said. Read More

 

10 Siri for Mac features I hope to see in OS X 10.12

By Sébastien Page on May 27, 2016

Siri is one of these features that feels like a broken promise. Not only it hasn’t evolved that much over the years, but it’s also not that much more reliable than it was when it was first introduced back in 2011.

If the rumor mill is any indication of what’s to come, it appears that Siri might make its way to the Mac, and maybe get even smarter with the introduction of an SDK for developers.

So I sat down and started thinking about what specifically I would want Siri to be able to do on my Mac, beyond the smart assistant’s existing capabilities. This is my wish-list.  Read More