Siri itself confirms Japanese support coming soon to Apple's iPhone 4S

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014


Apple's Siri virtual assistant for the iPhone 4S claims it can already speak Japanese, despite the fact that the language is not yet enabled in the feature's settings.



Watchful iPhone 4S users noticed on Tuesday that Siri is now claiming to speak Japanese. Given that recent rumors have claimed Siri will understand and speak Japanese, Mandarin and Russian as soon as March, Siri's admission could be taken as evidence that Japanese support, at the least, is imminent.



When asked what languages it can speak, Siri responds, "I speak Japanese, English, German and French. I'm studying some new languages, too."



It then adds, "You can change the language I'm using…just go to Siri settings." However, the settings pane for the feature shows only English (with separate selections for Australia, United Kingdom and United States), French and German, with no way to select Japanese.



Apple has promised that Siri support for Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Italian and Spanish will arrive sometime during 2012. Though the iPhone 4S has had the fastest international rollout of any of Apple's handsets, Siri has been unable to keep up the pace. In fact, Japan was one of the first countries to receive the iPhone 4S when it launched last October.











The iPhone maker is hard at work at expanding Siri's capabilities. The company posted several job listings late last year for "Language Technologies Engineers" who would help port Siri to other languages. The Siri development team is believed to be one of the largest working groups at Apple.



Apple has repeatedly promoted Siri as the standout feature for the iPhone 4S. Most recently, it released two new television commercials last week that show iPhone 4S users seeking advice from Siri as they realize their dreams of cross-country road trips and becoming a "Rock God."







Siri was originally a free application in the App Store until Apple purchased the company in 2010. At the time, the voice assistant was billed as being a "major cornerstone in how [Apple] competes with Google."



The feature was then unveiled last October during the iPhone 4S launch event. It has received praise for its "mind-blowing" abilities, though some have criticized it for its limited functionality overseas, beta status, and the difficulty it has in understanding certain English accents.



[ View article on AppleInsider ]

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    I have many Japanese speaking business contacts so this is good to mention to them. Surprisingly almost all of them currently use Android for their phone yet for some odd reason they also have iPads.
  • Reply 2 of 14
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    For the record, Google has some really good Japanese voice translation which we have been using in their translate app for iOS.
  • Reply 3 of 14
    Makes me wonder who will really be the first company to have strong artificial intelligence (A.I.) in their products... will it be Apple, IBM or Google?
  • Reply 4 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Makes me wonder who will really be the first company to have strong artificial intelligence (A.I.) in their products... will it be Apple, IBM or Google?







    Apple takes Siri out of beta.



    BUYS WATSON FROM IBM. INCORPORATES IT.
  • Reply 5 of 14
    jd_in_sbjd_in_sb Posts: 1,479member
    Johnny Sokko would have loved Siri.
  • Reply 6 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post






    Apple takes Siri out of beta.



    BUYS WATSON FROM IBM. INCORPORATES IT.



    Or... Siri talks to Watson and like Steve Jobs, learns everything about Watson before leapfrogging it.
  • Reply 7 of 14
    It's a real pity for SIRI users in Canada that they STILL do NOT have SIRI navigation and POI for their iPhone 4S. Shouldn't Apple work on this first?
  • Reply 8 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Makes me wonder who will really be the first company to have strong artificial intelligence (A.I.) in their products... will it be Apple, IBM or Google?



    It SHOULD be Google but Google has it's head stuck up it's own butt that they're mindset is fragmented like their OS.
  • Reply 9 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hmm888 View Post


    It's a real pity for SIRI users in Canada that they STILL do NOT have SIRI navigation and POI for their iPhone 4S. Shouldn't Apple work on this first?



    I would imagine that allocation of resources is based on market size, or market size over some other metric, i.e. (market size)/(cost of implementation) . Or maybe they throw darts at a spinning globe.



    Anyway, Japan doesn't have Siri at all, so that would perhaps be a greater priority.
  • Reply 10 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hmm888 View Post


    It's a real pity for SIRI users in Canada that they STILL do NOT have SIRI navigation and POI for their iPhone 4S. Shouldn't Apple work on this first?



    I think the U.S. is the only country that has full SIRI support, here in the UK we can't look for businesses, use Google Maps or Google Navigation with SIRI, it all comes back with a message saying it can only do those in the states.



    Really hoping it comes soon.
  • Reply 11 of 14
    Siri is going to get FIRED for talking too much. Maybe she had too much to drink.
  • Reply 12 of 14
    successsuccess Posts: 1,039member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Siri will understand and speak Japanese, Mandarin



    About time.
  • Reply 13 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by success View Post


    About time.



    Not exactly an easy thing to do, I guess.
  • Reply 14 of 14
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Not exactly an easy thing to do, I guess.



    No, it's not. The Japanese language has a LOT of words that sound exactly the same. The difference in meaning is found in the kanji used. So you can imagine, a language where you have to know the subject being spoken about and follow along in a conversation....how do you translate shorter spoken sentences? You have to make guesses about which words it might be.



    I wonder if you'll have to make some confirmations on word choice with Siri for Japanese...that would suck.
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