Apple intends to compete with Amazon’s Echo, and therefore, it is developing a product to give consumers a Siri-powered speaker for the home, claims The Information.’ Reportedly, Apple will also open up Siri to third-party apps, finally allowing developers to tap into the voice assistant.
Apple to release Siri SDK first
Apple’s Echo rival is more of a long-term project, so at first, the company will create and release a Siri software development kit, the website says. Apple will likely have its annual WWDC conference in June, and it might release the Siri SDK there.
Siri is already accessible to some third-party companies such as Yelp, but they have been able to do so only by way of specially crafted deals with the iPhone maker, according to the report. But with the kit, any developer would be able to utilize Apple’s voice assistant.
The report further states that the company was working on developing the Siri speaker long before Echo arrived. Apple’s speaker will be able to perform some new tasks now associated with automated bots and also have the ability to turn on and off any appliance supporting Apple’s HomeKit platform.
Apple’s reimagined Siri will be more helpful just like Facebook’s M assistant. Also it will be less restrained to core Apple features like setting alarms and sending texts. The iPhone maker will most likely announce Siri for the Mac as well this year, benefiting more than just phones and connected home speakers.
Rising market for smart home
The smart home market is becoming increasingly intertwined with cloud services and artificial intelligence-powered products. The Alexa assistant and Echo have made Amazon the leader in this field. Apple has one strategic advantage though: Siri is multilingual, while Alexa remains confined to the English-speaking U.S.
Amazon allows Alexa to connect to third-party apps and services openly, and this in part is a reason for its success in the home. This allows users to hail Uber rides, play games and perform all sorts of other tasks that Amazon is not able to accomplish on its own.
Google too is interested in entering the space and last week unveiled its AI assistant and a home speaker of its own. The former is called Google Assistant, while the later is called Google Home. Google has not announced a similar SDK for the Home as yet, but most likely, it will do so later this year.
Overall, it can be said that these speakers with AI software are not of any use unless developers make them capable of doing a lot more than they initially can.