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There are some companies so well-known for their less-than-stellar customer service that even a machine like Siri feels the need to offer its condolences when you need to get in touch with them. Try asking Siri for Comcast’s customer service number and that’s exactly the response you’ll get.

After spending somewhere in the ballpark of literally forever on the phone with Comcast today, it’s nice to see Siri showing a little solidarity.

Tellingly, this seems to be a Comcast-specific response. Use the same exact phrasing for competitor Time Warner and you’ll at least get some web search results, if not an actual phone number.

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July 13

After taking on messaging, cash transfers, and more, Facebook is preparing to challenge Apple in the virtual assistant arena. The social company is in the process of developing a Messenger-based Siri competitor called Moneypenny, a new report indicates.

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July 1

Eddy Cue confirmed late last night that a new iOS 9 seed is coming to developers next week with support for Apple Music, but since the service launched yesterday, users have discovered that there are a few ways to use certain aspects of it while on iOS 9.

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We’re not mean, so we won’t spoil the joke. But the Cookie Monster gets a cameo.

The original source appears to be this Reddit post.

June 25

With the first products using Apple’s HomeKit platform for home automation accessories arriving earlier this month, Apple has updated its support page detailing a full list of supported Siri commands. expand full story


I just wanted to point out that on my iPhone 5s with iOS a Siri now says what she can do in iOS 9 and watchOS 2 when you ask her what she’s doing. 

I remember that she would say stuff about the Apple Watch when you first said this so I wanted to try this out to show somebody and I saw that she had a bunch of new responses. 

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June 8

Apple CEO Tim Cook kicked off the company’s WWDC keynote presentation today with its usual update on numbers and growth since last checking in. The big numbers so far from today’s event: Siri is now 40% faster and more accurate, the company now supports 2500 banks for Apple Pay, and iOS and OS X adoption continues to outpace the competition. 

Head below for a full roundup of notable numbers and company stats announced during today’s event (we’ll be updating as more come up): expand full story

Apple has announced a new version of Siri with many new features in iOS 9. Siri can now show recent photos, create reminders about web pages and other in-app content, detect when you get in your car, and features a new UI inspired by the Apple Watch.

The new system can also automatically look up unknown numbers through your email to figure out who is calling, and show information on the lock screen that fits into your daily routine. It can also automatically show your Now Playing screen on the lock screen when you plug in your headphones.

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At WWDC, Apple has officially announced the new version of its mobile operating system, iOS 9. The update will be available in the fall for free. iOS 9 runs on iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.

Developing. Follow our liveblog here.

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June 1

Last month we saw a rather glorious video demonstration of how the Apple Watch can remotely control the Tesla Model S with the right software, and now that app’s developer has gone a step further by adding voice commands like remotely starting the car to the demo using Siri. Check out the video below: expand full story

May 27

After several years of quiet development, Apple is readying a major new iOS initiative codenamed “Proactive,” which will leverage Siri, Contacts, Calendar, Passbook, and third-party apps to create a viable competitor to Google Now for Android devices. Like Google Now, Proactive will automatically provide timely information based on the user’s data and device usage patterns, but will respect the user’s privacy preferences, according to sources familiar with Apple’s plans.

As an evolution of iOS’s Spotlight search feature, Proactive is the fruit of a long-term initiative that involved the acquisition of small app developers, and integration of core iOS apps. It will also work with Apple’s Maps application to display personally relevant points of interest using an augmented reality interface, and integrate with a third-party Siri API codenamed “Breadcrumbs”…

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May 26

cortana

Reuters reported back in March that Microsoft planned to bring its Siri competitor Cortana to iOS, and Microsoft has now officially confirmed this in a blog post.

Today, we’re announcing a Cortana application for Android phones and for iPhones which works as a companion to Cortana on your Windows 10 PC. The ‘Phone Companion’ app on the PC will help you install the Cortana app from the Google Play or Apple App Store onto your phone so you’ll be able to take the intelligence of Cortana with you, wherever you go […]

The Cortana companion will be available for Android phones at the end of June and for iPhones later this year.

While Microsoft is pitching the app as a companion to a Windows PC, it appears that most of the functionality will work in the iPhone app without the need for a Windows device, Microsoft saying that you can “make the same queries, ask the same questions” in the standalone app …  expand full story

May 13

May 6

applebot

Rumors that Apple might be creating its own search engine started doing the rounds last fall, when webmasters started seeing web crawler visits from IP addresses starting with 17 – the IP address block owned entirely by Apple. Apple has now officially confirmed in a support document that it is operating its own web crawler called Applebot.

Applebot is the web crawler for Apple, used by products including Siri and Spotlight Suggestions. It respects customary robots.txt rules and robots meta tags. It originates in the 17.0.0.0 net block.

While the wording is clearly intended to suggest that this is just business as usual, both the fact that Apple is running its own web crawler at all, and the somewhat vague wording, are interesting …  expand full story

May 4

GE announced today that it’s introducing HomeKit enabled LED lighting products offering Siri-controlled solutions for both the home and enterprise. With support for Apple’s new HomeKit framework, users will be able to control the lights from their iOS device using Siri.

The company noted that the new line of GE HomeKit lighting will also include its GE Align technology that “tunes the light spectrum to help promote the body’s natural sleep cycle by controlling the blue concentration of light output.” expand full story

April 27

Apple is now on its third-generation system for handling Siri queries, moving to the open source Mesos platform, according to the Mesosphere blog. Apple reportedly made the announcement at the Bay Area Mesos meetup last week.

During a presentation, Apple engineers said that the switch to Mesos would reduce latency, assist scalability, and made it easier to deploy new services as Siri’s capabilities are expanded …  expand full story

April 15

Update: Apple just uploaded the four new guided tours to its YouTube channel, as well. They are embedded below.

Apple has now updated its Apple Watch Guided Tour page with four more videos, featuring Phone Calls, Siri interactions, Maps navigation and the Music app. Apple began this series earlier in the month.

The videos demonstrate different Apple Watch features, such as taking a phone call, asking Siri for directions, getting navigation turn-by-turn directions in Maps or controlling music playback in the Music app.

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April 8

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