Siri, All Set To Tap Into iMessage And iCloud For The New 2017 iPhone Model

If you’ve been keeping up with the rumours and talks about Apple’s upcoming 2017 iPhone, you’d have read our articles about the new iPhone model’s larger OLED screen or the introduction of Augmented Reality as a prime feature on their next salvo.

But behind all the fuss around both hardware innovations, is a forgotten hero.

The software that’s going to power it all. An upgraded iOS has been released alongside every major iPhone revamp, till date. No one understands the criticality of an improved and energised software platform, better than Apple.

So, expect iOS 11, people. Not only is iOS the primary bond that has retained Apple consumers, and refrained them from shifting to a competing operating system, it has also been the very bedrock of Apple’s own growth and prosperity.

You may not have caught it so far, but patents have recently been awarded to Apple, that primarily focus on a revitalised Virtual Assistant feature — clearly hinting at a significant revamp of the iOS and how it’s next avatar will function.

Well, the patent which is for a “Virtual Assistant In A Communication Session”, lays out the basic fundamentals of the new journey. Siri, will most likely be integrated into iMessage and iCloud — which is a monumental change, much like that of the rumoured AR introduction.

The virtual assistant would be able to respond to queries made inside an iMessage chat. But does that mean that Apple will be listening in on your personal conversations?

No.

iMessage already is end-to-end encrypted and it is highly unlikely that Apple would compromise on user privacy for the sake of bringing Siri to iMessage.

To protect the privacy of its consumers, typically, Apple has made it quite transparent in their patent that members of an iMessage chat would be notified that at least one of them is using the Siri assistant within the chat session. And that the users would be privy to, and would be the authorizing party that would censor what personal data Siri can access.

On top of that, Apple is also planning on allowing Siri to make payments on behalf of the user, by choosing the suitable payment app when the user asks Siri to do so during the iMessage session. Users can currently make PayPal payments using Siri, but not while accessing iMessage. The transaction would have to be authorized using the Touch ID. This peer-to-peer payment system riding on an already end-to-end encrypted messaging session would be an impressive addition to the features already being rumoured for the next iPhone(s).

The extent of Siri’s reach might not just be limited up to the iMessage, but might even gain enough powers over the iCloud to access data from any other Apple device the user owns. Using the Apple ID, the information from the user’s devices would be derived and the necessary action and responses would be offered to devices across the operating system including the Mac, iPhone and even an iPad.

But here is the value judgement that you or any other Apple user/enthusiast should make.

Google has already beaten Apple to the stadium as its Google Allo app already provides similar services. The only difference is the fact that Allo isn’t encrypted simply because features like Google Assistant tap into a user’s data to provide its services and Allo needs to communicate with Google’s servers to cater to all the requirements of the consumers.

The decision will always remain subjective, dependent on the dilemma of choosing between privacy and being the first mover.

Irrespective of that choice, the upcoming iPhone seems to be destined to become an immensely powerful ace — backed by significant changes in hardware, software and the very ecosystem supporting it.

The only thing that might hurt it’s trajectory is if we’ve been hoping too hard, and reading too much into the rumours/conjectures and dreaming up a device that Apple isn’t going to launch come September!

There’s nothing worse than wishes that crash against the rock of reality, is there? And yet, Apple won’t be to blame, because they never said they were going to wow us. We just fervently, hopelessly and oh-so-desperately want them to!


Originally published at Chip-Monks.