Will Apple announce Siri upgrade and 3rd party support today?

Apple SiriApple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC16) kicks off today in San Francisco and there’s only one thing everyone wants to know – Have they got an answer to Amazon Echo whose Alexa assistant has proved to be a massive hit with consumers.

Just a couple of months ago at Internet Retailing Expo I predicted that Apple, Microsoft and Google would all be launching Alexa competitors. ‘Google Home’ has been announced. Microsoft are building ‘Bing Concierge’. Now it’s Apple’s turn.

I’m not expecting Apple to release a new hardware product (although in true Apple style it wouldn’t surprise me but there have been no leaks of a new hardware device). What the world is waiting for is to hear if they’re upgrading Siri and more importantly will they be opening up Siri to third party developers.

We’ve not managed to get our hands on an Amazon Echo as it’s only available in the USA thus far, but reports suggest that Amazon’s Alexa is way more responsive than Apple’s Siri. If Apple don’t want to fall behind then their artificial intelligence and voice recognition needs a step change overhaul to catch up.

The future of the Internet isn’t going to be computers or even laptops and mobiles. It’s not even going to be wearable devices and let’s be honest the Apple Watch is pretty useless if you don’t have your iPhone close at hand. The future of the Internet is going to be Echo type devices and even smaller devices which have limited functions (such as Amazon Dash buttons). The future is devices which serve us without us even having to think.

Apple won’t want to get left behind, so watch out for announcements from WWDC16. Apple desperately needs to stop it’s share price falling and it won’t do that all the time sales of iPhone and iPads are trending downwards.