Apple to lift restrictions on third-party apps using Siri

Posted:
in General Discussion
A future iOS update will have Siri use whatever app a user prefers, meaning apps such as WhatsApp could effectively replace the default Apple apps.




Apple is reportedly planning to allow third-party apps to take the place of its own Messages or other software tools. It would mean specifically that if a user regularly uses WhatsApp to message a particular contact, Siri would automatically send via that app too.

The move follows recent criticism of how Apple's own apps allegedly dominate the App Store, and take default place on iPhones, iPads and through Siri.

Apple released the news in a statement to Bloomberg, which AppleInsider has confirmed is legitimate and accurate.
Apple offers our users an experience that is only possible from the integration of hardware, software, and services. From the very first iPhone, we have included apps to provide customers with a great experience right out of the box for making phone calls, playing music, surfing the web, and more.

With every generation of iPhone we have advanced the built in capabilities for our customers with a few default apps designed for great performance, long battery life, seamless integration, and industry-leading protections for security and privacy. We have also created the App Store, the safest place to get apps, so customers can choose from millions of apps to find the ones that further enhance their iPhone.

In the few categories where Apple also has an app, we have many successful competitors and we're proud that their success is responsible for almost 2 million U.S. jobs in a thriving multibillion dollar market for developers.

Our North Star is always to create the best products for our customers and that is why iPhone has the highest customer satisfaction in the industry.
The update to iOS is expected to be released later in 2019, though the functionality also requires app developers to add Siri functionality.
razorpit

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    The quoted statement and really the entire Bloomberg article don't provide any evidence that this is true. The only comment from Apple is what AI quoted here, which doesn't mention opening Siri to third-party apps at all. Why does Bloomberg think that the statement from Apple means what they think it means?

    If it turns out to be true, I'm curious if it really will work the way that Bloomberg says it will. The way Bloomberg frames it Siri will automatically send a message to a specific contact using the service I typically use with that person. So, if I use Messages with friend A and WhatsApp with friend B, Siri will use the app associated with each friend accordingly. To me, that's different than "replacing the default app". If the WhatsApp replaced Messages as the default I would expect all messages to (attempt) to be sent via WhatsApp. Or maybe that's just me.
    edited October 2019 gilly33uraharamacpluspluswatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 15
    This is not news, Siri already does that via shortcuts,
    A future iOS update will have Siri use whatever app a user prefers,
    agilealtitude
  • Reply 3 of 15
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,259administrator
    This is not news, Siri already does that via shortcuts,
    A future iOS update will have Siri use whatever app a user prefers,
    While I understand what you are saying, Siri Shortcuts is not the same as native Siri support.
    OnPartyBusinesslolliverfastasleep
  • Reply 4 of 15
    The drama surrounding this Bloomberg article reminds me that B.S. is still alive and well in the states.
    lkrupp
  • Reply 5 of 15
    philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,671member
    One would hope for Apple to have the user designate default apps. When I tap on an address Apple Maps opens. Which is quite useless over here.
  • Reply 6 of 15
    EsquireCatsEsquireCats Posts: 1,188member
    It seems to be less about actively selecting (say from a panel in settings), and rather the Siri AI choosing the right app for the contact based on prior interactions, thus no longer needing to specify "using Whatsapp" or similar. It seems the developer would need to make adjustments to their app to allow the system to learn which contacts are messaged using the app. Thus building a statistical model that Siri can use to automatically direct the voice command to the right app.

    There is some intelligence in Siri for automatically choosing the right option when many are available. Such as when there are multiple contacts with the same name, multiple phone numbers for a contact or even on the Apple watch when choosing a workout through a voice command. Siri currently only surfaces options when there are likely to be many options to choose from. (Such as frequently communicating with two people who share a name, or when the voice command is too vague to discern a plausible answer.)
  • Reply 7 of 15
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 5,901member
    Whatever the implementation, the direction this is moving is better than simply defaulting to an Apple service and having that do the work. If something (Siri) or the user can set a preference for a specific use case and be more flexible as a result it's a good move.
    caladanian
  • Reply 8 of 15
    If true it’s good news for Siri as the development team expands its capabilities and find more creative ways for Siri to be useful. 
  • Reply 9 of 15
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    The quoted statement and really the entire Bloomberg article don't provide any evidence that this is true. The only comment from Apple is what AI quoted here, which doesn't mention opening Siri to third-party apps at all. Why does Bloomberg think that the statement from Apple means what they think it means?

    If it turns out to be true, I'm curious if it really will work the way that Bloomberg says it will. The way Bloomberg frames it Siri will automatically send a message to a specific contact using the service I typically use with that person. So, if I use Messages with friend A and WhatsApp with friend B, Siri will use the app associated with each friend accordingly. To me, that's different than "replacing the default app". If the WhatsApp replaced Messages as the default I would expect all messages to (attempt) to be sent via WhatsApp. Or maybe that's just me.
    I have to agree with you, and I'm astounded that Bloomberg and AI managed to jump to such a conclusion based on that!

    All they said was that developers make money on the app store, even if they make apps similar to the ones we give away for free.

    Reminds me of AI insisting that iOS apps were going to run natively on MacOS, even when the likes of John Gruber said otherwise.
    williamlondonlolliverStrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 15
    Does that mean Apple Maps would send ETA through WhatsApp if that’s my primary channel?
  • Reply 11 of 15
    <>You said:
    A future iOS update will have Siri use whatever app a user prefers, meaning apps such as WhatsApp could effectively replace the default Apple apps.
    Have no idea where you got this conclusion from. Apps will be able to use Siri. That is all. They can use it now. I can send message with Viber. You just have to tell Siri to do that.

    Or your sentence means that there will be Siri settings to choose which app will be used for common task like message, call, mail, link etc? Still do not replace Apple apps as any touch based input will trigger system apps.

    As I read elsewhere it will be contact based not default based. Siri will use messenger you use the most with person. So contact have to be in contacts.



    edited October 2019
  • Reply 12 of 15
    macplusplusmacplusplus Posts: 2,081member
    The quoted statement and really the entire Bloomberg article don't provide any evidence that this is true. The only comment from Apple is what AI quoted here, which doesn't mention opening Siri to third-party apps at all. Why does Bloomberg think that the statement from Apple means what they think it means?

    If it turns out to be true, I'm curious if it really will work the way that Bloomberg says it will. The way Bloomberg frames it Siri will automatically send a message to a specific contact using the service I typically use with that person. So, if I use Messages with friend A and WhatsApp with friend B, Siri will use the app associated with each friend accordingly. To me, that's different than "replacing the default app". If the WhatsApp replaced Messages as the default I would expect all messages to (attempt) to be sent via WhatsApp. Or maybe that's just me.
    Besides, that would be a catastrophe if Apple lets Siri to choose the app to send the message with  :#  :D  :D
  • Reply 13 of 15
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,045member
    I wish I could tell Siri to open This or That app, and quit same.


  • Reply 14 of 15
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,170member

    "...When the software refresh kicks in, Siri will default to the apps that people use frequently to communicate with their contacts. For example, if an iPhone user always messages another person via WhatsApp, Siri will automatically launch WhatsApp, rather than iMessage. It will decide which service to use based on interactions with specific contacts. Developers will need to enable the new Siri functionality in their apps. This will be expanded later to phone apps for calls as well... Apple appears to be taking the action in response to antitrust claims..."

  • Reply 15 of 15
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 5,689member
    The quoted statement and really the entire Bloomberg article don't provide any evidence that this is true. The only comment from Apple is what AI quoted here, which doesn't mention opening Siri to third-party apps at all. Why does Bloomberg think that the statement from Apple means what they think it means?

    If it turns out to be true, I'm curious if it really will work the way that Bloomberg says it will. The way Bloomberg frames it Siri will automatically send a message to a specific contact using the service I typically use with that person. So, if I use Messages with friend A and WhatsApp with friend B, Siri will use the app associated with each friend accordingly. To me, that's different than "replacing the default app". If the WhatsApp replaced Messages as the default I would expect all messages to (attempt) to be sent via WhatsApp. Or maybe that's just me.
    I think this AI article has it wrong. That statement was in direct response to the previous Bloomberg article about the House antitrust panel looking into 3rd party app integration — you can see the statement partially quoted at the end here:
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-10-02/iphone-ios-users-can-t-change-default-apps-safari-mail-music

    This article doesn't give a source but presumably Gurman was told separately by someone (maybe the same spokesperson) from this statement about the stuff presented in this article. 
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