Apple has made a lot of innovations in 2022 so far, and they’re about to make another change with the Siri feature.
The tech giant is reportedly planning to ditch “Hey.”
Apple is allegedly training Siri, its voice assistant, to take commands without saying the first half of the phrase “Hey Siri.”
The activation phase launches Siri on Apple products like the iPhone, iPad, HomePod, and Apple Watch.
According to Bloomberg, the move could take place in 2023 or 2024.
While the update is minor, experts believe it is a sign that more changes are underway and that in-depth training in artificial intelligence will be required.
Lian Jye Su, research director at ABI Research, said the system recognizes requests more accurately from two keywords.
The transition to using a word would rely on a more advanced artificial intelligence system.
“During the recognition phase, the system compares the voice command to the user-trained model,” explained Su.
“‘Siri’ is much shorter than ‘Hey Siri,’ giving the system potentially less comparison points and higher error rate in an echo-y, large room and noisy environments.”
Apple’s change would allow them to catch up with Amazon’s “Alexa” prompt, which doesn’t require an initial voice assistant activation word.
In 2018, Microsoft moved away from “Hey Cortana” so that users need only say “Cortana” on smart speakers.
However, for product inquiries from Google, users must still use the phrase “OK Google.”
The “Hey Siri” change comes at a time when Apple, Amazon and Google are working together on the Matter automation standard.
The Matter automation standard allows automation and Internet of Things devices from different vendors to collaborate.
James Sanders, the chief analyst at market research firm CCS Insight, says Apple’s priority is likely to redouble efforts to improve Siri functionality.
Apple’s voice assistant has been active since February 2010, over twelve years ago.
It started as a standalone app on Apple’s App Store before the tech giant bought it two months later.
Apple then integrated Siri into the iPhone 4S.
It introduced the ability to say “Hey Siri” without using the home button in 2014.
Over the years, Siri has gotten smarter by integrating third-party developers like carpooling and payment apps.
It also supports follow-up questions, multiple languages, and other access.
Despite the improvements, Siri still has problems, including user misunderstandings and wrong answers.
“While the ‘Hey Siri’ change requires a considerable amount of work, it would be surprising if Apple announced only this change to Siri,” said Sanders.
“Considering the rumored timing, I would anticipate this change to be bundled with other new or improved functionality for Siri, perhaps alongside a new model of HomePod and integrations with other smart home products via Matter, as a reintroduction to Apple’s voice assistant.”