Munster: Siri coming to Beats, Apple to expand AR capabilities at WWDC

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in General Discussion
With Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference less than a week away, analyst Gene Munster on Tuesday published his predictions for the event, prognosticating Siri integration with Beats hardware, expansions to Core ML and more.

WWDC 2018


Munster notes Apple's virtual assistant technology lags "measurably" behind Google Assistant and, to a lesser extent, Amazon's Alexa and Microsoft's Cortana.

In December, the analyst found Siri was able to answer 75 percent of 800 questions posed in an unscientific test. That figure was up from 66 percent in April 2017, but still behind Google's technology. If Siri was more proficient in commerce and information domains, however, the December test would have resulted in a score of about 85 percent, on par with Google Assistant.

As such, Munster believes Apple will announce new Siri domain integrations at WWDC. The company has been reluctant to incorporate e-commerce tools into its AI data set, as Amazon and Google does, citing user privacy concerns. That could change, however, as Apple works to refine its differential privacy technology.

Munster also expects Siri to get a boost on HomePod. In February, the analyst found Apple's smart speaker integration at the bottom of the totem pole despite HomePod's high asking price. Apple will likely add domains to Siri's HomePod-specific domain buildout to bring the hardware in line with competing speakers from Amazon and Google.

In addition to more features, Munster believes Apple can grow its share of the smart speaker market by integrating Siri in a cheaper Beats-branded option. Though Beats has been an Apple subsidiary for nearly four years, the audio firm has yet to gain access to Siri tech. The closest Beats came to Siri was a 2014 ad that introduced Beats Pill mascots to the AI.

Apple continues to build out artificial intelligence assets for developers, as evidenced by the introduction of the Core ML framework at WWDC 2017. With Core ML, developers can tap into cutting edge machine learning features like real-time image recognition, face detection, emotion detection, machine translation, sentiment analysis, search ranking and more, without being experts in the field.

At WWDC 2018, Munster predicts an expansion on the 15 domains currently supported by Apple's machine learning framework.

ARKit, Apple's framework for augmented reality applications, should also get a few minor improvements, Munster said. Despite Apple's continued AR hype, and constant promotion of ARKit apps on the App Store, developers have delivered only a handful of compelling titles built on using the technology.

Moving on to digital health, a segment in which Apple has thrived over the past couple years thanks to Apple Watch, the analyst believes the next-generation "iOS 12" will provide device management tools designed to cut down on screen time and digital anxiety. Improvements to data sharing transparency, specifically notifications, are also expected.

Finally, Munster is looking for one hardware announcement at this year's developers conference, though what device the analyst expects to be announced was left unmentioned.

Last week, AppleInsider noted Apple's online store was showing severely constrained MacBook supply, suggesting a refresh is imminent. The company last year introduced revamped MacBook models alongside iMac, iMac Pro and HomePod.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    heli0sheli0s Posts: 35member
    "Siri coming to anything" is literally irrelevant until Siri gets A LOT smarter. Otherwise we'll have just yet another version of Siri on Beats that's frustrating in a different way than it is on iOS, macOS and HomePod and ATV. I'll be truly disappointed this WWDC unless a huge portion of it is under the theme "Siri is now a lot smarter and consistent on all your devices". 
    patchythepiraterepressthis
  • Reply 2 of 13
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member
    Whatever would we do without the vapid speculation of Gene Munster?
    edited May 2018 cornchiprepressthislkruppasdasdlolliver
  • Reply 3 of 13
    nunzynunzy Posts: 662member
    Munster knows nothing. If he says it, it will never happen.

    He said he's not covering Apple anymore. He should just stop.
    cornchipSpamSandwichLukeCagelolliver
  • Reply 4 of 13
    Nameo_Nameo_ Posts: 34member
    As for that “one hardware announcement,” I seriously hope it’ll be the iPad Pro w/ Face ID and less bezel. After having tried my friend’s iPP 10.5” for a few minutes, I got spoiled and all of a sudden my Air 2 feels like it lags and stutters (even though it doesn’t). And I’ve been holding off upgrading my Air 2 for some time now. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 13
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,699member
    Whatever would we do without the vapid speculation of Gene Munster?
    Yes that certainly was a lot of sh1t thrown at a very large wall. 

    Munster is the Apple TV set chap isn’t he. 

  • Reply 6 of 13
    d_2d_2 Posts: 92member
    Rayz2016 said:
    Whatever would we do without the vapid speculation of Gene Munster?
    Yes that certainly was a lot of sh1t thrown at a very large wall. 

    Munster is the Apple TV set chap isn’t he. 

    Yes, he’s that guy... for many years he insisted...

    I don’t doubt that it was a project at Apple, but he went on and on about it ... who knows, maybe someday if Apple can ‘own’ the best large format display technology
  • Reply 7 of 13
    lito_lupenalito_lupena Posts: 116member
    munster makes the absence of ming chi kuo glaring.
  • Reply 8 of 13
    I doubt that Apple would make its second Siri speaker a Beats branded one. It might make sense to have a HomePod Mini, where people have a HomePod in the living room and a Mini somewhere else in the house but to then dilute the HomePod brand by throwing Beats into the mix seems to be a step away from the integration that Apple likes.
  • Reply 9 of 13
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,010member
    heli0s said:
    "Siri coming to anything" is literally irrelevant until Siri gets A LOT smarter. Otherwise we'll have just yet another version of Siri on Beats that's frustrating in a different way than it is on iOS, macOS and HomePod and ATV. I'll be truly disappointed this WWDC unless a huge portion of it is under the theme "Siri is now a lot smarter and consistent on all your devices". 
    Just can it. You probably have never used Siri or you wouldn’t make such a statement. I have an Echo Dot sitting right next to my iPhone 8 charging dock so I can tell you that there isn’t that much difference.
    jony0lolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 13
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,010member
    My WWDC prediction? No major hardware announcements. Maybe a refresh on something.
  • Reply 11 of 13
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,422member
    I doubt that Apple would make its second Siri speaker a Beats branded one. It might make sense to have a HomePod Mini, where people have a HomePod in the living room and a Mini somewhere else in the house but to then dilute the HomePod brand by throwing Beats into the mix seems to be a step away from the integration that Apple likes.

    How exactly would that dilute the HomePod brand?

    Siri and Apple Music integrated into Beats speakers would be a fairly huge deal - having a second brand allows a company to experiment without (possibly) ruining their own brand. I still think Apple should buy Sony for that same reason. It would allow them to expand their platforms into another worldwide brand. (Not to mention the music and movie studios and all the technology IP.) Imagine a fairly inexpensive Sony desktop PC running macOS... Apple can maintain their finite selection of "closed" computers and have Sony fill in the gaps with more traditional computers. Or how about making Gene Munster happy and building AppleTV into Sony TV's?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 13
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,626member
    Whatever would we do without the vapid speculation of Gene Munster?
    There’d be fewer articles on AI and we may have to go out and play. 

    And nobody here wants that. 
    edited May 2018
  • Reply 13 of 13
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,626member
    mjtomlin said:
    I doubt that Apple would make its second Siri speaker a Beats branded one. It might make sense to have a HomePod Mini, where people have a HomePod in the living room and a Mini somewhere else in the house but to then dilute the HomePod brand by throwing Beats into the mix seems to be a step away from the integration that Apple likes.

    How exactly would that dilute the HomePod brand?

    Siri and Apple Music integrated into Beats speakers would be a fairly huge deal - having a second brand allows a company to experiment without (possibly) ruining their own brand. I still think Apple should buy Sony for that same reason. It would allow them to expand their platforms into another worldwide brand. (Not to mention the music and movie studios and all the technology IP.) Imagine a fairly inexpensive Sony desktop PC running macOS... Apple can maintain their finite selection of "closed" computers and have Sony fill in the gaps with more traditional computers. Or how about making Gene Munster happy and building AppleTV into Sony TV's?
    Now I don't know much about Beats but presumably it sells to more than just owners of Apple device. It could therefore create a halo affect for people who want this. 
    lolliverwatto_cobra
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