Apple hopes to improve Siri with machine learning

 phonearena.com  4/16/2018 9:56:00 PM 
Apple’s latest Machine Learning Journal entry suggests future improvements to the “Hey Siri” command could be on the way. Siri was launched back in 2011 and is undeniably one of the oldest virtual assistants around. Despite this, however, the likes of Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa are often considered to be superior, but it appears Apple wants to put a stop to this by starting with the most basic command.

“Hey Siri” has been used by Apple device users for a number of years now, with the assistant registering each user's voice upon setup. Despite this precaution, though, it appears a number of scenarios can cause the assistant to be activated by mistake. In fact, Apple itself has identified three. The first involves the owner of the device activating the assistant accidentally by saying a similar phrase, while the second is simply when other users that do not own the device in question utter the “Hey Siri” phrase. Lastly, and the most annoying according to the Silicon Valley-based company, is when other users speak similar phrases that can unintentionally trigger the assistant. This final one is the result of an update introduced back in 2015 that allowed iPhones to constantly listen out for users. Now, however, it appears Apple hopes to introduce a number of improvements based on machine learning that will help the assistant better listen out for the voice of the device owner and ignore those of others. This, in return, should hopefully reduce accidental activations by others by up to 75%, and those by the owner by up to 50%.


In Siri’s current state, the assistant initially stores 5 repetitions of the popular command when it is being set up, while it then goes on to store another 35 to further improve accuracy. The ultimate goal for the company, however, is to remove this initial setup process entirely, allowing Siri to begin learning from the very beginning without asking the user to repeat the trigger command. Apple is yet to confirm when these improvements will be introduced, but with iOS 12 set to be announced in June, the updates to Siri may well be included in the new update.

source: Apple via: VentureBeat
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